Becoming a new mother, whether it is your first or fortieth, is a life changing experience. A new you is born along with your baby and getting to know yourself again is important. Physically you feel exhausted from labor and the challenges of looking after your beautiful new bubba.

 

After childbirth the majority of you will not see your doctors for another 6 weeks and as a rule you're told to wait to exercise until you have been cleared. Only problem is with a new baby everyday is a marathon!

Mum and baby

What can you do in the first 6 weeks to start the reconnection and healing process? 

  • We believe there is so much healing and recovery you can do in these 6 weeks that is both safe and effective.
  • Developed to support you in your return to fitness and strength - you are able to follow along with Founder, Ali Handley, as she begins her core reactivation program the day she gets home from hospital. 

What is the program?

  • The BodyLove Pilates Postnatal After Birth Training Program is a 6 week core activation guide that provides you with safe and gentle exercises that can begin as soon as you are ready after labor – as early as the next day.
  • Caring for a newborn is a demanding job and it is our goal to help support you through these challenges by rediscovering your core connection, over-all strength, stability and mobility.

How does it work?

  • Created from founder, Ali Handley’s genuine postnatal experience – the program allows you to follow along with her daily 10min core workouts that start the day she returns from hospital after giving birth to her second child. 
  • Join Ali as she works to close her Diastasis Recti or Abdominal Separation, reconnect with her abdominals, repair her pelvic floor and address the postural needs of a postnatal woman – stretching, spinal mobilization and postural workouts. 
  • For six weeks you can access a new 10 min video each day that is crafted for that exact stage of your recovery.
  • Depending on the time you have available you will be able to add stretch and strength workouts. 
  • Listen to your body – if you don’t feel ready to move on to the next series of exercises repeat the week you have just done.
  • Not near a screen and want to do the workouts - You can download The BodyLove Pilates After Birth Training Program  - which includes a Day-by-Day workout guide.

* Importantly remember - Be kind to yourself -You've just had a baby!

What will you need?
All you need is 10 minutes a day to dedicate to your recovery. You don’t even need the internet with the day-by-day workouts included in the downloaded guide.
Optional equipment;

  1. pilates mat
  2. physioball
  3. yoga block
  4. small ball
  5. theraband
  6. foam roller    

Ali Handley teaches pilates postnatal workout programPostnatal workout program props include mat, physioball, ring, weights, blocks and foam roller

You've had a C-section - can you still do the program?

  • Yes!
  • You have just had major stomach surgery so give yourself a few extra days while you are in the hospital and then begin the program when you return home.
  • Make sure you walk around as much as possible in the hospital – even if you don’t feel like it! It will start the healing process.
  • You will need to take the program a bit slower while the stitches heal but it is crucial you begin the seated core work in weeks 1-2.
  • You will repeat weeks 1 & 2 before you move onto the final 4 weeks of the program.

SELF-ASSESSMENT

Self Assessment is an important element of the BodyLove Pilates postnatal after birth training program. Learning how to assess your healing progress is crucial to ensure you are ready for the next phase.

What are you assessing?

  • Your separation or Diastasis Recti – depth, width and length.
  • Any greater than 2 fingers is considered dysfunction and rehab must continue.

How do I perform self-assessment?

  1. Look in the mirror – what is the appearance of the skin? Is there mottling?
  2. Safely get down on to your back (side first then roll over) with your knees bent, head down.
  3. Begin to feel down the Linea Alba by gentle pushing into it with your index finger and middle finger together. Beginning at the sternum and go all the way down to just above your pubic symphysis.
  4. What is the integrity of the connective tissue? Is there tone and resistance or can you push your fingers through.
  5. Starting with your two fingers pushing into the Linea Alba just below the sternum – Nod your chin and lift your head a little off the ground. Do not try and engage your abdominals – leave them relaxed.
  6. Can you push fingers? Is there room to add a finger or two? If so repeat exercise with the additional fingers.
  7. Less than two fingers is considered normal – two fingers or more and this is considered significant and dysfunctional.
  8. Move down the body repeating the exercise above for each of the following sections – a little above the belly button, on the belly button, just below the button and just above the pubic synthesis.

You will be able to watch as Ali demonstrates her first self-assessment after her baby.

What else can you do?

Looking after a new baby is a full on job. The core work you are doing in the program targets your abdominal recovery but also included in the program are upper and lower body workouts. These focus on connecting the core work with the toning and strengthening of your arms, back, legs and butt.

There is another great way to compliment the work you are doing in the program – and this includes your baby.

  • Walk, walk, walk
  • Gentle slow walks at first that build to power walking a few times a week is the best form of exercise in these first weeks.
  • Walking gets you out of the house
  • Walking helps your baby have a good sleep
  • Any form of cardio will send those feel good endorphins pumping through the body