So after you have had a baby you obviously have lots of things to adapt to and your whole life changes. Therefore it is understandable that it is often a difficult time to maintain a commitment to exercise. There are so many benefits in post natal exercise such as:
- Improved posture
- Increased local muscular endurance
- Increased stamina
- Increased energy
- Increased metabolic rate
- Increased weight loss and body image
- Increased self confidence
- Reduced anxiety
For the first two weeks after giving birth all physical stress should be avoided (don’t carry anything heavier than the baby). You shouldn’t resume normal activity for a minimum of six weeks. If you had your child by caesarean section you should not exercise for 12 weeks to allow proper healing time.
Before you do start exercising you must have a visit to your GP and get the ok to start a programme.
So when you do start exercising make sure you start off gently. Low impact exercise and then build it up gradually. Don’t do too much too soon.
When you are pregnant levels of relaxin rise within your body which increases the elasticity of ligaments and cartilage. This means you should avoid doing any stretching to increase flexibility for 16-20 weeks, just stick to maintenance stretching. You should also avoid high impact activities for the first few months and when resistance training stick to muscular endurance work.
There are lots of post natal exercise classes which are great to join in.
Check out the NHS website if you would like some more information. http://www.nhs.uk/Livewell/pregnancy/Pages/Exerciseafterpregnancy.aspx