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Postpartum Exercise

Postpartum Exercise

Stage 1: 0-6 Weeks After Giving Birth

Goal: Physically recover, strengthen pelvic floor and increase mobility.

  • Start with walking 30 minutes 2 times per week.
  • Kegal Exercises 5 reps (Lie on your back with your knees bent and tighten your pelvic floor muscles. Hold for 5 seconds and then rest for 5 seconds.)
  • Pelvic bridges 3 sets of 10 reps (Lie on your back with your knees bent, push your feet into the floor and lift your backside up while squeezing your glutes and hold at the top for 3 seconds. Rest between each set for 30 seconds.)
  • Lower Abdomen Contractions 5 Reps on each side (Sit on the edge of a chair with both of your feet on the floor. Squeeze your pelvic floor while slowly lifting one leg off the floor. Hold each leg up for 5 seconds and rest for 5 seconds between reps.)
  • Stretch

Stage 2: 7-12 Weeks After Giving Birth

Goal: Light-moderate activity, strengthening abdominals and pelvis.

  • Start with walking or light-moderate activity 30 minutes 4 times per week.
  • Kegal Squats 3 sets of 6 reps (Sit on the edge of a chair with your arms out in front of you. Slowly stand up and focus on contracting your pelvic muscles. Squat back down until you are hovering over the chair. If you feel you need more of a challenge try these kegal squats on one leg.)
  • Double Leg Lift Scissor 3 sets of 8 reps (Lie on your back with your knees bent and lifted at 90 degrees. Place your hands behind your head. Extend your legs diagonally up with crossed ankles while extending your arms above your head and lifting your shoulders. Hold this position and try switching your feet over and under slowly.)
  • Planks 3 sets 30-60 seconds (Get in plank position with abs engages, back straight, and forearms on the floor. Be sure to keep your hips up and your abs tight.)
  • Bird Dogs 3 sets 10 reps each side (Kneel on all 4’s. Lift alternating arm and leg so they are both parallel to the floor. Squeeze your butt and try not to let your arm or leg go out to the side.)

Stage 3: 12+ weeks after giving birth

Goal: Moderate-intense exercises that will lead you back to being back at your pre-pregnancy fitness level.

  • Start with brisk walking and moderate-intense activity. 30-45 minutes 4 times per week.
  • Russian Twists 3 sets of 15-20 reps (Sit on your bottom lift your bent legs up off the floor hovering a few inches. Twist side to side while touching the floor on both sides of your body each time.)
  • Mountain Climbers 3 sets of 10 reps each side (Get into a push-up position. Bring one knee up to your elbow on the same side of your body and then back into push-up position. Repeat on the other side. If you need more of a challenge try bringing your knee to the outside of your elbow.)
  • Explosive Lunges 3 sets 12 reps per leg (Start in a lunge position with your front knee over your ankle and your arms out straight overhead. In one swift movement bring your back leg up to your chest while your elbows pull backwards. Then lunge back into your initial position.)
  • Reverse Crunch 3 sets 10 reps (Lie on your back with your legs bent and your palms under your butt. Push your hands down as your lift your bottom off the ground while rolling your knees towards your chest. Then slowly lower your hips back to the floor.)
  • Sumo Squat Jumps 3 sets 15 reps (Stand with your legs spread wider than your hips with your toes pointing out. Keep your arms straight and pointing down while squatting down without bending at your waist. Once you touch the floor explode into a jump, landing with soft knees.)