Postnatal Exercise Classes
MamaWorkout is a fitness and health concept developed in Germany. It's specifically designed for mothers during pregnancy, after birth and throughout the first baby years. These postnatal classes are designed for a quick regeneration and recovery after birth, so moms can soon go back to normal fitness.
In Germany this program is approved and covered by the health insurance providers, allowing women at least 10 postnatal MamaWorkout sessions after each pregnancy. The insurance providers are convinced of the quality of the program and the beneficial longterm health results.
Who is this program for?
The program is suitable for mothers who are more than 6 weeks postnatal after spontaneous or cesarean delivery. However it is never too late to start this program, even if your child is much older. Mothers who are less than 6 weeks postnatal can start their own regeneration program at home.
Why are postnatal exercise classes so important?
Postnatal exercises help your body to return back to normal after birth. During pregnancy, skin, muscles and the spine are stretched and the organs are pushed away from their original place. Especially your straight abdominal muscles separated to give space to your growing baby. This gap, called diastasis recti needs to be closed before returning to more rigorous exercise. The postnatal exercises are carefully chosen to support your body finding back to its old fitness
If your body feels normal after pregnancy, you might not think you don't need postnatal exercises, however complications such as incontinence or prolapse can actually occur many years after giving birth.
What are the benefits of postnatal exercise classes?
During the classes, you will teach your spine to return to its neutral position.
Longterm backache can be prevented as well as backache while carrying your baby.
With specific exercises you can close the gap between your straight abdominal muscles which developed during pregnancy to give space to your growing baby.
The medical term for this condition is called diastasis recti.
Last but not least the pelvic floor exercises also known as Kegel exercises are an important part of the workout. A healthy pelvic floor helps prevent:
Incontinence - Kegels can build up or tighten the muscles that keep urine from leaking from the bladder
Prolapse - Kegels may help prevent or treat pelvic organ prolapse. Prolapse occurs when the pelvic floor muscles are weak and cause the uterus, bladder, urethra, small bowel or rectum to bulge against or droop into the vagina.
frequent or urgent need to urinate
involuntary passing of urine or stools
constipation or pain when passing stools
lower back pain
pressure on the vagina, rectum or pelvis
a feeling that something is falling out of the vagina
a feeling as if sitting on a small ball
pain during intercourse
vaginal discharge and bleeding
a soft bulge of tissue that may protrude from the vagina
The following pictures show the same women. She didn't lose any weight but she has a recovered, healthy pelvic floor tone. On the left side you see her 6 months earlier with a week pelvic floor after pregnancy
Apart from the physical benefits these classes can also:
Make you less tired because it raises your energy level and improves your sense of wellbeing.
Improve your cardiovascular fitness and restore muscle strength.
Improve your mood, relieve stress and help prevent postpartum depression.
Help you get out of the house and have some fun.
Help you to make new friends.
Give you some me-time. It's important to look after yourself and focus on your own needs and wellbeing.
What hinders a good regeneration after birth or might even do damage?
Exercising too soon after delivery or by doing inappropriate postnatal exercises can do more damage to your body rather than improve your health and fitness. You still have hormons in your body after birth and while breastfeeding that loosens your ligaments and joints. A general rule: The body needs as long to recover as the pregnancy lasted, which means around 9 months. Don't put too much pressure on yourself to lose weight and get back to your pre-pregnancy body shape. To aid recovery after pregnancy, the following should be avoided:
heavy lifting ( more than the weight of your baby)
rolling up from the supine position = situp's as long as your gap is not closed
high impact exercise such as running/jogging or jumping
too early or wrong strengthening of the abdominal muscles in the first few months
breaststroke (as long as your diastasis recti is not closed)
The most common objections to not join the postnatal exercise classes
I don't have any incontinence problems
Even if you have no problems at the moment - it's an erroneous belief that this will stay like that for the rest of your life. Did you know that 1 in 4 woman aged over 45 has a weak bladder?
I had a c-section so I don't need postnatal exercise
Your spine, skin and pelvic floor muscles were all still stretched during pregnancy and delivery and therefore need to recover.
Why should I join a course? I can do my own fitness program
Yes, it might be easier to exercise at home, but let's be honest, it can be difficult to find the time and motivation! It is very important that exercises are carried out correctly and it can be difficult at first to learn how to effectively activate teh pelvic floor - you will learn how to do this at MamaWorkout. Also you will meet other mothers, have fun together and make new friends.
Postnatal exercise classes are boring and not intense enough for me
Many mothers get sore muscles even if the exercises don't seem high impact and especially at the beginning you might think: I cant do this anymore!
My baby is already 8 months old - it is too late now and therefore no use to join
It is never too late to start. The pelvic floor is a muscle that can be trained at any time like every other muscle in any other type of fitness training.
I was doing a lot of sports before pregnancy. Isn't it enough to just continue as I did before being pregnant?
No not at all - actually the contrary is true. Sports such as aerobic, jogging, horse riding, squash, tennis and volleyball have a high impact on the pelvic floor and can cause damage. So always start with the postnatal exercise classes which will strengthen your pelvic floor before you restart with your favorite sports
Still not sure if this is something for you?
To find a class click on the button below and ask for a free session to discover the benefits