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Pilates for new mums

Becoming a mum was one of the most rewarding and challenging adventures I have ever been on. Throughout my pregnancy I continued cycling until 37 weeks and doing Pilates right up until I went into hospital.

Fitness for me has never just been about physical fitness it is my stress relief and my mental health reset button.

Physical and mental health are intrinsically linked, moments of ‘you’ time where you focus on your own health and wellbeing I believe, make you more resilient to the more challenging moments in motherhood and life in general.

As a new mum I understand that time is precious and in short supply. Pilates exercises are great for new mums because they are functional and easy to fit between naps, feeds and changing nappies.

Here are my top 3 exercises for new time crunched mums

*If you have had an uncomplicated natural birth, you can do these exercises from 10 days post birth. If you have had a C section or any complications, please wait until your 6-week check or check with your GP/Midwife before exercising.

  1. Leg Slides – improve your pelvic stability
    1. Lay on your back hands on your belly to check for unwanted movement in your pelvis, knees bent
    1. Breathe in, check body alignment
    1. As you breathe out, engage your core and pelvic floor, slide one foot along the floor to extend the leg
    1. Breathe in once leg us extended, maintain a neutral pelvis and spine
    1. Breathe out to return the leg to the starting position, keeping your core and pelvic floor engaged
    1. Repeat 6 to 8 on each leg
  • Clam – build glute stabilisation
    • Lay on your side, knees bent, hips and knees stacked on top of one another. Rest one hand under your head and the other on your hip
    • Breathe in, wide thoracic breathing
    • Breathe out, engage your core, pelvic floor and glutes. As you lift the knee keep the ankles pressed together. Imagine someone is pressing down on your knee as you lift and fight against this resistance
    • Breathe in and hold
    • Breathe out and return your knee to the bottom
    • Repeat 6 to 8 on each side
  • Dart – improve your posture
    • Lie on your stomach, rest your forehead on a rolled up towel, lay your arms relaxed by your sides, heels turned out
    • Breathe in to prepare
    • Breathe out engage your core and pelvic floor, lengthen and lift your body moving your head forward to elongate the spine.
    • Lift your arms to reach down the sides of your body palms turned inwards
    • Breathe in and hold, your eyes should be looking at the floor
    • Breathe out and lower
    • Repeat 4 to 8 times (there should be no lower back discomfort, stay low)

Come and join a post-natal Pilates class or my new buggy fitness outdoor exercise class which is suitable for mums, dads, grandparents or carers, bring your babies along too! Get in touch with Hannah on hannah@beyondthestudiopilates.co.uk or visit www.beyondthestudiopilates.co.uk for more information and to book.