Postpartum Pilates Workout

Hi, guys! It's Robin from The Balanced Life Welcome to your postpartum workout

[Music] So at the time I'm filming this workout I am just three months postpartum after having my twins so I am easing back in to my workout routines, really focusing on rebuilding core strength, particularly the pelvic floor So this workout is going to include a combination of core strengthening exercises It will be safe for diastasis recti if you have that If you're not sure what that is, check out my other YouTube video We're going to not only strengthen the core, we're just going to move, get the blood flow going again

We're also going to do some really great exercises and stretches to counteract that forward posture that we have from holding babies, feeding babies, rocking babies, okay? So we're going to get our spine back in alignment, our shoulders open, some nice rotation so that you can come back to this workout as you are easing into your Pilates routine again and just wanting to feel good, okay? Because I'm right there with you So let's go ahead and start just in a seated position Start with your hands resting right on your legs Close your eyes, lengthen your spine up to the sky, and just focus first on lengthening the spine because chances are you've been slouching a little bit, and we want to just get that length back into your body Let's take some deep breaths

Inhale to prepare, exhale feel yourself growing taller Good Inhale to prepare, and exhale lengthen Good We're going to interlace the hands behind the head, bring the head back into your hands

That might be enough of a stretch right there just to get into that nice tall posture Feel the abdominals draw in around your spine You might not feel much but feel what you can there in those abs And as you exhale, you're going to rotate to one side, inhale come back through center Exhale rotate, and inhale center

So I want you to stay really tall in your spine and imagine that I took a broomstick and I threaded it through your elbows What that's going to do is help you to actually keep those elbows nice and wide and keep the rotation in the spine instead of doing this, right? Rotating with the elbows Because then you lose the work So head back into your hands, rotating from the rib cage, exhale twist, inhale center, exhale twist, inhale center One more time, and release

Good Coming on down to your mat, go ahead and lay yourself down, knees bent, feet flat on the floor, arms resting long down by your side Feel your spine lengthen, feel your shoulders fall open, and keep your feet about sit bone distance apart Good, maybe walking them just a little bit closer to your hips Take an inhale here and as you exhale, just flatten your back into the mat, rocking the pelvis, and release back to find a more neutral spine

Good Just a little bit of movement here for the lower back and also thinking of starting to engage those core muscles again So lifting the pelvic floor as you flatten the back, drawing in on the waist, and then relaxing and releasing Go ahead and relax the pelvic floor, relax the abs Exhale engage, inhale release

Good Exhale engage So if you are doing Pilates in the postpartum season and you're doing it in a very smart way, your workouts are not going to look very big and flashy, and that's okay because you need to start by doing that deep core work, we all do, to restore the health of our pelvic floors and core muscles So we need to do this small detailed work until we feel like we've regained that strength It will support us as we go on to more advanced challenging workouts

So don't overlook this simple deep work It's really important All right, let's take it into a full pelvic curl or bridge Take an inhale here, exhale again you're engaging, you're lifting the pelvic floor, pressing into the mat with your feet, coming up into a nice bridge position Inhale at the top and as you exhale, articulate down through your spine, working out any tension in your spine as you go

Good Release to neutral Inhale, exhale rolling up Good Can you imagine that you have a small ball between your knees to help you to keep your inner thighs engaged? And when you connect to your inner thighs, it's going to help you connect to the pelvic floor and to the abs

So imagine that small ball between your knees Inhaling, exhaling rolling down Beautifully done If you can do these every day, it would be so good for you Good

One more just like that, feeling the movement, feeling intention by pressing the feet down into the mat, imagining the little ball, and rolling down Good Find neutral spine so just a tiny little space between your back and the mat, not very much, and engage as much as you can through the abdominals So think of a corset wrapping around your spine You're going to take your right leg and just stretch it out and tap the mat, and stretch it out and tap the mat

You're really thinking stable core, belly button up and in That's the intention here Can you maintain that pelvic stability as you move the leg? Again, like I told you, it's not flashy but it's important and it's effective Let's go for three more Three, and two, drawing the back of the rib cage into the mat, and one

Good Other side We go out and in, out and in, and three, and four, and five, shoulders open, collarbone wide, and nine, and ten Good From here float your right knee to tabletop, keep your left foot on the mat

Find that stable neutral pelvis Reach out with the thighbone, bring the thighbone back up Inhale, and exhale, inhale, and exhale Can you stay controlled through here? Can you breathe? Good And three, and two

If you're feeling it in your hip flexors, that would be normal for the postpartum season because that just means your core is weak and your thighs, your hip flexors, are doing more work to do this exercise So the more we rebuild our strength the less we should feel it in our hip flexors because then we'll be able to get deeper into our core once we get those muscles working and firing like they should again Good It'll come back Just do the daily work

And you may find one side feels totally different than the other That can be normal It just means we need to rebalance the body a bit Good Last one, and down

Okay, options here depending on where you're at If you have diastasis or if you're really, you know, newly postpartum, around six weeks or so, then I want you to keep your feet on the mat just like this, and you're going to do side to side, okay? Like that If you're ready for a little bit more, you're going to take palms to the sky, arms into a low V Right leg floats to tabletop, left leg comes to meet it Glue the knees together, and inhale rotate hips, knees, and feet

Exhale, use the abs to come back through center Inhale twist, and exhale center So I kept my feet on the floor until I was probably about eight to ten weeks postpartum and now at three months, I'm feeling a little bit better to be lifting my legs off of the mat again So listen to your body and do what feels right for you This is still really hard though

Inhale, and exhale, inhale, it doesn't have to be a big rotation so only go as far as you feel like you can control, right? Calling upon those ab muscles to do the work here for you Good One more to each side Inhale, and exhale, inhale, and exhale Very good

Hug the knees in towards your chest, and feet back onto the mat Let's walk the feet out so we're a little bit in this longer angle with the knee Find that neutral pelvis, straighten your right leg up to the sky, draw the thighbone–imagine that you're drawing it deeper into your hip socket, and we're going into leg circles here So we're going to cross over midline, circle down, out, and up Now talk about challenging our core stability

Move nice and slow here Three, and four, good, and five Your goal is to stay stable in your core while moving freely in the hip socket Whew, it's hard, you guys! If you're doing it right, it's hard Reverse the circle

Bring it around one, and two, and three, let's use the breath Ready? Exhale pull it up, and exhale up Good Three more, and one So for me by the end of that I'm definitely feeling it in my hip flexor, which just tells me I need to work on that core strength, which is what we're doing

We're doing the right thing Okay, other side, nice and stable Cross over midline, circle down, out, and up And two, and three, and four, five, six, seven, and eight Reverse it

Exhale up one, and two, three, and four, pulling those abs up and in Last one Good From here take that ankle, cross it over your opposite thigh and just hold this figure four stretch If you'd like a deeper stretch, you can draw the bottom leg in towards you, and hold and breathe and relax

Remember when you're stretching that you still have the hormones in your body that make you extra flexible So just keep that in mind when stretching You don't want to overdo it Those hormones stay in your body for quite a few months after pregnancy Good

Other side Hold and breathe Good And from here you're going to roll yourself onto your side–important to do when you're pregnant and postpartum so that you protect those abs rather than just rolling straight forward Always roll onto your side, push yourself up

And let's go ahead and end with one more beautiful stretch here for the upper body So you can go straight legs or you can keep them a little bent, whatever is most comfortable for you Hands are behind your head, head coming back into your hands We're going to exhale, exhale, inhale Exhale, exhale, inhale

Sitting up nice and tall Good You've got it Let's go one last set, and release There you go, you guys

Great job! Now this workout can be done every day It's safe to do on repeat so just keep coming back to it as you're building up your strength Listen to your body, honor your body Don't rush the process and you'll get your core strength back soon if you just keep going forward So keep up the good work, and I'll see you back on your mat soon! [Music]

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