Pregnancy and those first few weeks with your precious bundle can be a wonderful time for any new mum, and certainly something that shouldn’t be rushed. However, the desire to regain a pre-pregnancy body can be incredibly strong.
For those new mums who have had a c-section, however, the road to recovery can be somewhat slower than for those who have had a vaginal birth. It is important to remember that this is okay, and everyone is different, so take your time and go at a pace that works for you. Pilates is an excellent exercise solution for those who are looking to help their body in the post-Caesarean recovery stage. The gentle exercises can assist in recovery and help to regain core strength.
Exercising after pregnancy
It is very important not to rush into any form of exercise after the birth of your child. For those who have had a vaginal birth, gentle exercise can be resumed when you feel ready, with more strenuous exercise following a 6 week check-up. For those who have had a c-section, the NHS recommends not beginning any form of exercise until after the 6 week check-up (this is also true for more complicated births). This is because a c-section is abdominal surgery and early exercise may cause damage to the delicate scar tissue. Remember, you are not alone in having to wait. Around 25% of births are c-sections.
What are the benefits of Pilates post c-section?
During pregnancy, both the abdominal and pelvic floor muscles are lengthened, and this can cause them to become weaker. Pilates can help to not only strengthen them, but also improve the stabilising roles of the appropriate muscle groups.
Gentle stretches and mobilising in the early weeks following birth can also assist with joint stiffness and any tightness around your scar. This will all help you to manage things like the day to day transfers, for example getting out of bed. It can also help to offer you the gentle reminders you need to stand tall in order to help your scar.
Don’t throw yourself in
It is a good idea to look for Pilates classes that are specifically designed for pregnancy or post pregnancy as the exercises will take into account the best type of stretches and moves that you should do. If exercising results in discomfort around you scar you may want to speak to your GP, take things slowly and take notice of any cues that your body gives you. It took 9 whole months to grow your tiny human, so allow yourself plenty of time to get your core back to strength.
If you are looking for post natal Pilates classes I run two classes a week, one from Emsworth and the other from Southbourne. If you live further afield I also offer online Pilates packages from pre and post natal.