Woolley Grange’s Breathe Retreats – and 10 Tips for Post-Natal Fitness and Wellbeing
Ahead of our second post-natal retreats at Woolley Grange Hotel in Wiltshire, we’ve shared our tips for post-partum health (both mental and physical), including exercise.
• Don’t work out (or do anything else productive) when what you really need is a nap. Grab any chance you can to catch up on lost sleep, including when your baby is sleeping.
• Give yourself time. You’ll need more than a couple of weeks before getting back into a pre-baby exercise routine.
• Don’t do classes or formal exercise of any kind for at least six weeks if you had a caesarean section – walking is best for getting your body back into action.
• Focus first of all on your pelvic floor, core muscles and posture as your main steps towards regaining pre-baby fitness.
• Avoid jerky movements, as the hormone relaxin (which softens the ligaments and joints during pregnancy and childbirth) can remain in the body for several months, causing a loose pelvis and unstable joints.
• Kegel routines are great for re-strengthening pelvic floor muscles; avoid crunches, Pilates or any kind of ab work for the time being.
• When you do ease your way back into abdominal workouts, concentrate on plank poses and variations of it and avoid crunches and deep twists.
• If you experience diastasis (separation of the abdominal muscles), find out about working with a physical therapist to repair them.
• Practise mindfulness and listen to your body as to how long it needs to recover from childbirth.
• Rethink your attitude to exercise and how it fits into your new life. It’s possible to regain your fitness without attending scheduled classes that might not work around your baby’s routine. Walking and swimming are both great for post-partum fitness.
Read also our tips on how to have relaxing breaks with babies.