You may experience some changes to your posture during pregnancy, which is a result of hormonal softening causing your muscles, ligaments and joints to loosen and stretch.
This can sometimes lead to back aches, pelvic joint pain and other issues related to poor posture.
All of which can place an increased burden on your body during this exciting time in your life.
After an extended period of time your body may become accustomed to this change in posture, which can pose health concerns in the short and long term.
Following the arrival of your baby, it is important to allow your body to fully recover and then you can start taking the following positive steps to improving your posture and thus overall wellbeing.
Get a head start
You can start preparing your body prior to falling pregnant and continue a safe level of exercise, advised by your doctor, throughout your pregnancy.
This can be effective for preventing pain around your lower back and pelvis as well as setting yourself up for good posture post birth.
If you already lead an active lifestyle, maintaining an exercise program prescribed by a health professional will contribute to your overall wellness while pregnant.
You should however avoid starting a drastically new exercise program once falling pregnant as this could have a negative effect on your health.
I encourage you to seek guidance from your physio who can develop an individual program tailored to your needs.
You may also like to consider Mums In Motion™ classes offered at Back In Motion where a qualified physiotherapist will instruct you through exercises specific to your stage of pregnancy.
A conscious stance
One of the easiest ways to improve your posture is to simply be aware of poor posture and make a conscious effort to correct it.
Pregnancy affects your posture in a number of ways, your chin may poke out further, your upper back can curl forward, your shoulders may become rounded and your lower back may arch more.
While this may be normal to an extent during pregnancy, you would want to avoid continuing this posture post-pregnancy.
To improve your posture, stand with your back against a wall. Your bottom, shoulders and head should all be making contact with the wall.
You will know you are in the correct position when your ears are in line with your shoulders. Practice this daily, gradually increasing the amount of time held in the position. Be sure to stop if you feel any discomfort.
Although you will experience tiredness in the months following the arrival of your newborn, with the approval from your doctor I would encourage you to continue this exercise to improve your posture.
The exercise essentials
Following childbirth, and once your doctor has given you the green light; you can start to reintroduce pelvic floor and core activation exercises.
This will aid your body’s restoration process, improve your posture and help you return sooner to everyday activities.
Body weight exercises such as planking will further improve your core strength and will also help tone your abdomen.
It’s important to understand that not all core exercises will be suitable for new mums and you should consult a health professional first.
Not sure where to begin? Enquire about Mums & Bubs classes at your local Back In Motion practice.
In these small group classes, a physio will guide you through a safe and fun fitness program involving interaction with your baby and other new mums.