Health and wellbeing blogs

Returning to exercise after the birth of your baby

Following the birth of your new baby, it is important to balance rest and activity to ensure a speedy recovery.

5 Sep 2018

 Returning to exercise after giving birth

In the first six weeks following your delivery

Gentle walking is recommended

Start with five to ten minute walks by the end of the first week, aiming to increase by five minutes per week.

By six weeks, you should be able to walk 30-40 minutes.

It is fine to take bub in the pram, however try to walk on flat ground without twisting or adding shopping to the pram in this early stage.

Try to get into a routine of walking and talking with your partner while they push the pram.

Pelvic floor

Aim to practice four times a day for 10 repetitions, gradually increasing the hold time to five to ten seconds.

Aim to start using bubs weekly age to match your hold time of your pelvic floor contraction.

Once you can do this, we then like you to practice 10 fast and strong contractions.

Don’t forget to tighten your pelvic floor before you cough, sneeze or lift your new bub.

The pelvic floor can get lazy following your delivery.

Tummy exercises

No sit-ups, however gentle lower tummy contractions may be OK after a vaginal delivery (leave for three to six weeks following a caesarean section).

If practicing on your back, try 10-20 reps for five second holds during morning cuddles with bub on your chest to start tummy time.

Doctor knows best 

At your six week check a one hour postnatal assessment check will be performed and this is a good chance to ask your Obstetrician/GP  if you can return to exercise.

Your six postnatal assessment involves assessing and treating your pelvic floor, bowel and bladder habits and abdominal muscles and may include reviewing and progressing pelvic floor exercises, giving abdominal strengthening exercises and addressing any bad habits you may be practicing.