When you first find out you’re expecting a baby, your exercise routine is probably far from your mind. However, this is an important part of your pregnancy that you need to consider. Here are some reasons why pilates is a great workout for moms-to-be!
Strengthens Your Pelvic Floor
The pelvic floor is an important group of muscles that supports the uterus, bladder, bowels, and other abdominal muscles. Typically, kegel exercises are encouraged to help support this important muscle system, but pilates is another way to help create balance within them.
Maintaining a healthy pelvic floor during pregnancy is crucial. The pelvic floor muscles may weaken as your baby grows, which often makes labor and recovery more difficult. A weakened pelvic floor will also cause the muscles surrounding your bladder to loosen, causing more accidents.
Pilates exercises are an excellent way to support your pelvic floor health throughout your pregnancy. Pregnant women who participate in pilates classes and exercises find that their pelvic floor muscles become balanced, which helps prevent incontinence.
A balanced pelvic floor also helps with labor and delivery. Pilates is a great way to prep your body for going into labor by strengthening your muscles. After delivery, healing is often sped up when the body and muscles are in good shape.
Make sure to talk to your instructor to obtain guidance on moves you should modify based on your abilities. It is ok to make changes in class so that your body is best supported throughout your pregnancy. If you would like a second opinion on what moves you should modify you may reach out to a Pelvic Floor Physical Therapist (PFPT). A PFPT will be able to perform an examination to see if you have weak or spastic pelvic floor muscles and will help you activate them appropriately as your body changes.
Reduces Back Pain
Pregnancy is notorious for bringing on back pain. However, pilates does an excellent job of engaging your core muscles as well as the muscles in your lower back. When these muscles are strengthened, you are less likely to experience severe back pain.
Try finding a pilates instructor to help you work on exercises that will specifically target this area of your body. You will thank yourself for staying physically active, which has tons of benefits for pregnant women.
Helps Control Your Breathing
When thinking about labor, people often think about all the breathing exercises associated with it. But did you know that breathing is an essential part of a pilates workout? When you take a prenatal pilates class, your instructor will most likely spend time going over how to breathe through each of your exercises. This helps relax your body even when it is under pressure due to your workout (or labor!).
Breath control is an excellent skill to learn when you participate in a pilates workout. It focuses on core strength while teaching you to breathe through each exercise. Sounds like excellent prep for labor, doesn’t it?
Aids Postpartum Recovery
Postpartum is often a tricky time to navigate. It comes with its ups and downs as you and your new little one get used to each other. Pilates works to strengthen the body beginning with your core muscles and reaching throughout your entire body. When these areas of your body are strong before you get to your postpartum time, it will help speed up your recovery. This means that you will have the physical strength you need to take on motherhood from the very beginning!
At Better Day Chiropractic, we’re dedicated to serving you throughout your pregnancy and postpartum recovery. We also offer sports, family, and pediatric chiropractic care. If you are located in Charlotte or the surrounding areas, reach out to us today.