Where to Start Postpartum
If you are someone who is newly postpartum and you are looking to add some movement back in your life, then this video is for you. There is no reason you have to wait until your six week checkup to start to add in some exercise to your life. If you’re feeling like you’re ready to go, then that’s great.
We just have to remember that soft tissue healing takes about six to 12 weeks. So we need to allow those tissues to heal, but you can still start to add in some movement. You just modify for if you have any pain, if you have any pressure or leakage. Those are things we just want to monitor and be aware of, and if those do pop up with any exercises then we want to modify.
But do what we want to do when you are newly postpartum? So say you are a few weeks out from having your baby, we want to start to really reconnect with your core and your pelvic floor. We’re going to use our breath to do this. I’m going to take you through a few different exercises and how I incorporate breath and how we can reconnect with our core using these exercises.
The first one is a cat-cow with your breath. So on all fours, you’re gonna let your belly drop, and you’re going to look up towards the ceiling. As you do this, you’re going to take a breath in. And then you’re going to round your back and let your head drop. When you’re in that position, you’re going to exhale and gently pull your navel towards your spine. Think about your pelvic floor, closing and gently lifting up. So it’s inhale, relax, exhale, engage. You can do that for about eight to 10 breaths.
We are going to use the same breath for pretty much every exercise we do. We’re going to think about inhaling, relaxing your belly, relaxing your pelvic floor, exhaling, engaging, pulling navel to spine, pelvic floor closes and lifts.
So the next exercise you can try is a bird-dog. So from all-fours, you inhale in the center. Then as you exhale, you’re gonna reach one leg back, and reach your opposite arm forward. Inhale, exhale. If it’s too hard to lift opposite arm and leg you can start with just your arms or just your legs. So again, you inhale in the center, you exhale, engage, and you can just reach one leg back, and then your other.
You can repeat that same type of movement, but now on your back. We call this a dead bug. So you can put your legs up, and arms up. Inhale at the center. And exhale, engage while you reach one arm back. Then come back to the center, inhale, exhale, reach the other arm. When you feel ready, you can add in your legs. And then as you continue to build strength, the full movement you reach opposite arm, opposite leg.
Lastly, starting to work on a side plank. So with your knees bent on your elbow, you’re just gonna lift those hips up. Knees are stacked from here. You can think about inhaling. And as you exhale, gently pull your navel towards your spine, Inhale, release. Exhale, engage.
You can do one set of each of those exercises. Or can do a few sets. You can spread it throughout your day. So do one in the morning, one in the afternoon, kind of whenever you have time. That’s just a simple way to start to add some exercise back into your life and start to reconnect with your breath.
Here at Peak Endurance Performance & Physical Therapy we help active adults in the Madison Area get back to the activities they love without pain or limitations. We see people of all ages, ability levels, and individuals trying to get back to a multitude of movements including: getting back into running, women postpartum, CrossFit athletes, climbers, gymnasts, wrestlers, overhead athletes, and your recreational weekend warrior. If you’re looking to get back to the activities that give you meaning, relieve stress, and make you feel like you again, feel free to reach out below and we’ll see if we’re the right fit for you.