The Postpartum Core
Hey You, busy mama, I see you! Have you taken time to breathe today? Or to activate your core muscles? Are you feeling aches and pains you didn’t have before you became a mama? The answers to these questions are important and I think it is time we have a chat about your core muscles. Are you ready?
When your beautiful, amazing body grew and transformed in order to carry your child(ren), your core muscles underwent some really significant changes. Some of your muscles became over-lengthened, while others may have become too short, both scenarios impacting the muscle’s ability to function optimally. In addition, some of your muscles may have developed tension as they worked to support you and your baby. This also may have resulted in tension in surrounding muscle groups.
When I refer to your core muscles, I am referring to the transverse abdominus, the deepest of the abdominal muscles, the multifidi, deep muscles of the spine, the respiratory diaphragm, AKA the big mover for breathing, and the pelvic floor muscles, the group of muscles that provide support to the pelvis, spine, and organs and are important for optimal bowel and bladder as well as sexual function. Changes to the length, strength, and/or function of these muscles can be linked to low back or pelvic pain, bowel, bladder, or sexual dysfunction, and the disruption in the overall ability to perform the activities you love to do pain-free and stress-free! Whether you had a vaginal birth or cesarean birth, your core underwent changes and you may still be noticing those changes postpartum. Remember, your body evolved over a 9-10 month period, it’s going to take time and effort to restore it to optimal functioning!
If you’re a mama then you will benefit from core muscle retraining, especially with guided education during functional activities (think lifting your child, getting up from the floor, using the bathroom, squatting to pick up an object from the floor, etc.). Even if you are symptom-free, restoring your core postpartum will be so beneficial to preparing your body for future pregnancies or prevention of symptoms later on down the line. I highly recommend you seek guidance from a physical therapist who specializes in working with postpartum clients to ensure that you rehabilitate your core safely and effectively.
Interested in learning more about my Postpartum Wellness and Physical Therapy sessions? Email firstname.lastname@example.org to set-up a free phone consultation today!