Many congratulations on your newest addition! No doubt your whole body is feeling awesome but rather exhausted, stiff, and full of tension in those early days after having baby.
Below are 5 things you can do to ease the discomfort. If you are still experiencing pain from a section or from your vaginal delivery, simply focus on the breathing exercise and those parts that bring you joy and no pain!
1. Belly Breathing – place two hands onto your belly and inhale fully and deeply so that your hands lift up gently, and breathe out long and slow. On the exhale, ensure you fully squeeze out every last bit of air, and draw the belly inwards. Breathe like this with the eyes closed for 5 minutes.
2. Engage and release your pelvic floor muscles. Take a breath in to start and as you exhale, contract the muscles, inhale to relax. You can do this alongside the Belly Breathing, and they can be done right after the day you give birth. It will help heal the area.
3. Cat-Cow is so simple but yet it really brings so much relief for the back, release tension in the muscles and brings fluidity and flexibility into the back aswell. With a flat back take a breath in, then as you breathe out, bring your chin to your chest and slowly bring the top of the back up to the ceiling. Inhaling, dip the belly down and the bum up as you look up and draw your shoulders back. Repeat as often as you feel is required.
4. Seated Pelvic Tilts - similar to Cat Cow but this time you are rolling back and forth on your sitting bones. As you exhale, round your back and drop your chin to your chest as you bring the back of your hands together, in front of the body. Inhale, open the chest up to the ceiling as you arch your lower back, opening the arms and hands up and out.
5. Pelvic Tilts/Bridge - these are a fabulous exercise to do straight after having a baby. If you have a pilates ball, you can pop it in between you knees. If not, be mindful of slightly rolling the thighs towards each other and don't let your knees pop out to the sides. On a breath out, engage your pelvic floor and begin to lift the hips up off the floor. Hold for a moment, and roll back down slowly and with ease. Ensure the feet are facing forward.
Spend 5 minutes a day doing this routine and you'll begin to feel like yourself in no time! If baby is awake, you can pop them on a blanket beside you :)
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If you'd like to read more about my 5 - Week Postnatal Online Recovery Program, take a look here.
Helen Plass is a Pre & Postnatal Fitness Specialist, and Yoga Instructor, working with women and their birthing partners to achieve a comfortable, healthy & happy journey into Pregnancy, birth and Motherhood. She is known for her very practical & non-judgmental approach to pregnancy and the crazy times of motherhood. Check out all her communication at NurtureMamas.com, and if you are in Ireland, her local business MumandBaby.ie