The postnatal pelvic floor and exercise

The postnatal pelvic floor and exercise

Pregnancy places untold demands on the body and weakens that muscles of the abdomen causing problems for postnatal mothers. Three in four mothers will have problems later in life from birth related pelvic injuries – incontinence, pelvic organ prolapse, painful sex, back pain.

Whether you are 6 weeks, 6 months or 6 years postnatal you will always be postnatal. Your body will be very different at each stage and you will feel differently at every stage. The hardest thing to appreciate can be that everyone is different and not to compare yourself to how quickly other mothers get back to exercise. It has taken nine months for your body to get to where is was before your baby was born so it may not return to where it was pre-pregnancy as quickly as one would like.

As a women’s health physiotherapist I am regularly asked when is a good time to return to exercise (running, gym etc) postnatally. My answer would be that everyone is different and giving someone an exact timeframe is near on impossible as there are so many factors that can influence however there is lots that a women’s health physiotherapist can help you with to get you on the right track.

What are the signs that you may not be ready to run, gym or even undertake other forms of high impact exercise?

  • If you leak urine or worse when working out
  • If you experience pelvic or lower back pain during or after exercise
  • If there is bulging, straining, protrusion or doming anywhere on or within your abdomen or pelvic floor when you work out
  • If your body shakes or trembles during any movement or hold type exercise

If you are experiencing any above the above symptoms or your just not sure on what you should be doing to help the pelvic floor recover – you should see a women’s health physiotherapist. They can fully assess the pelvic floor and a provide specific exercise program to strengthen the pelvic floor to help with symptoms and reduce the likelihood of further complications.

If you are suffering from any postnatal pelvic floor issues click here to make an appointment or call (059)9116939.