10 Postpartum Exercises to Get You Back in the Saddle

Guest post by Susy Richards.

Postpartum is a difficult time for any woman. If you are an equestrian, then you may be affected by postpartum depression due to your riding activity begin to cut down during pregnancy and after the birth. The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists clearly advises being safe than to be sorry. It may seem possible for some women to ride until the 10th week of pregnancy, but may not suit everyone. Within 12 weeks, the uterus pushes itself out of the pelvic cradle and is no longer in the safe zone.

Post Delivery
The recovery happens at its own pace based on the type of delivery you experienced. A minimum of four to six weeks of adequate rest is required to be back normal whereas a cesarean may take much more time. During the initial weeks post-delivery, your body and your brain undergo drastic changes and mood swings from being excited to a dull and uninteresting day.

A few signs that you might be in postpartum depression:
Lack of concentration
Feeling disconnected
Unable to accept the change in reality as you lost control over yourself.
Lack of sleep
Feeling disorganized and sadly most of the time

Postnatal depression is very common among new moms. About 15-20% of the women experience it and could be treated with professional help. If you were an equestrian before pregnancy, chances are you might soon overcome postpartum as riding makes you regain your strength, both body and mind wise. Here are 10 exercises that can help you get back in the saddle. If you have gone through a C-Section, please consult your physician before you start working out.

Get set. Start Moving
The first step is the hardest as far as anything is concerned. The first few weeks make you feel exhausted all the time. Allow 4-6 weeks of rest for the body to regain strength. Start to walk initially as it’s the only thing that you can during the first month.


Belly Breathing
Exhale and Inhale allowing your belly to contract and expand as much as possible. Belly breathing is useful for people with anxiety disorders. Comfortable deep breathing is the key to relaxation.

Strengthening your Abdominal Muscles
Lie back on the floor with your knees bent and feet on the ground. Keeps your hands on the floor for firm support. Now tilt your pelvic muscles in either direction for few seconds. Repeat the process with a short recess. Pelvic tilt strengthens your abdominal muscles that are more stressed out during pregnancy.

Firm up your Lower Back
Similar to the pelvic tilt, lie back on the floor with knees bent and feet touching the ground. Move your hips up off the floor and lower back into position slowly. Repeat the steps 5-6 times with 10 reps each. Pelvic bridge strengthens your lower back, buttocks, and abdomen.

Strengthen your Traverse
Lie on your back with knees bent. Place a towel across your upper shins and pull up to your chest and release. Inhale and exhale as you repeat the pull ups. This can help strengthen your traverse.

Work out your Arms, Chest, and Abdomen. 
Regular pushups can work out your arms and chest at the same time. This may be especially difficult during the initial couple of months. Nevertheless, take your time and limit your workout to only as much as your body can handle.

Yoga
Yoga is one the best ways to make your body flexible again. Join new moms groups as it can be rewarding both in terms of physical and mental health.

Kegels 
This classic exercise can help you regain control over your bladder. Post pregnancy may make you to pee even while sneezing. By doing more kegels, the longer you can hold them.

Bench Push-up
Place hands on the plank with shoulders wide apart. Bend your elbows and lean towards the bench with your body. Repeat steps 5-6 times. Bench push-ups can strengthen your shoulders, elbows, and arms at the same time

Talk a long walk 
Not in a mood to flex out? Take a long walk with your baby. As you walk, take deep breaths flexing your stomach rhythmically. Walk briskly for few minutes and slow down for a while. Change the pace of your walk every few minutes. When you feel relaxed, try flexing and start enjoying your day.

Susy Richards is a lovely mother of 3 girls (3 years, 4 years and 5) and a simple woman who is ready to share her priceless experience with other mommies around the world. She is an Advanced Practice Provider who passed birth doula and postpartum doula courses at Childbirth International in 2013. Susy is passionate about providing holistic care and is involved in pregnancy research currently publishing her articles concerning pregnancy on site rocketparents.com.



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