PREGNANCY

AND PILATES 

As most mothers will agree,

giving birth is the single greatest

and arguably the most strenuous

and athletic event of a woman’s

life. Pregnancy causes dramatic

physical, emotional, hormonal, and
psychological changes. Pilates is the perfect form of exercise during and after pregnancy as it focuses on your total body while being adaptable to your individual needs during each stage of your pregnancy.  Postnatal Pilates will help you learn to love your amazing and powerful body and regain and rebuild your strength and stability.
 

Do you feel stress and rounding on your shoulders from the near constant feeding, holding and rocking? Low back, hips or knees, bothering you from having to get up and down while holding your baby? Lack of sleep, juggling household chores and taking care of everyone else. The demands of motherhood go on and on and make it difficult to find time for self-care and recover from pregnancy.  

HOW CAN  POSTNATAL PILATES HELP? 

  • Accelerates the healing process by increasing blood flow and oxygenation to muscles

  • Strengthens transverse abdominis; your “corset” muscles to stabilize your spine 

  • Increases awareness of and improves function of pelvic floor musculature 

  • Promotes good alignment and posture, which reduces discomfort due to imbalances

  • Intentional breathwork and increased circulation will help you feel energized and grounded, which is especially helpful for sleep-deprived parents. 

Contraindications

You must be cleared by your doctor before starting any exercise program. Your body changed in many ways during pregnancy, so exercise in the first weeks and months after childbirth will be different than before you were pregnant. Pregnancy hormones have made your joints and ligaments loose, so you will need to be extra careful to avoid injury. 
 

What is Diastasis Recti?

Diastasis recti, the “mommy pooch”, is an excessive separation of the abdominals, which increases your risk of lumbopelvic pain.  Exercise is proven to treat and reduce the condition. Diastasis recti occurs in approximately 40% of postpartum women*.

Diastasis Recti: avoid forward flexion, rotation, and anything that increases intra-abdominal pressure, such as planks and push ups. 

As a professional dancer and fitness enthusiast, I am passionate about helping people live a healthy lifestyle. I have taught fitness and dance for 15 years, and hold a BFA in Dance and a minor in Family Studies and Human Development. At the University of Arizona, I developed a passion for Pilates while rehabbing an injury and training with master teachers, including Ron Fletcher. In NYC, I continued my journey obtaining my AFFA group fitness, LindaFIT Pilates Mat, and Club Pilates 200 hour reformer certifications. I have experience training people with disabilities, recovering from injuries, and various special populations. My experience teaching mommy and me, creative movement, and kids gymnastics, combined with Pilates led me focus on Postnatal Pilates.  I'm available for group and private mat or reformer lessons for mom and/or mom and baby. My teaching style is positive, nurturing and will challenge you to push yourself to your fullest potential.

About Me

*https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S1356689X14001817?via=ihub&fbc
 

* www.ijhsr.org vol.6; issue; 6; june 2016. Effects of Abdominal Exercises on Reduction of Diastasis Recti in Postnatal women. 
 

* Indian Journal of Physiotherapy and Occupational Therapy. 8 (1), 210, 2014 Correlation between diastasis rectus abdominis and lumbopelvic pain and dysfunction. Khushboo Dalal, Amrit Kaur, Mahesh Mitra

© 2018 by Stephanie Brooks and Emmeline Wood

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