Ok…please read the fine print & know that I am not a PT, physiotherapist, nurse, doctor. I am, however, extremely passionate about women reaching the goals they set. Reality dictates that this isn’t easy & obstacles will be thrown at us to ensure that the blood, sweat & tears shed along the way add extra oomph to the fist-pumping “YES!” on attainment of said goals.
Obstacles come at us from all directions & include factors such as time, our headspace & our physical state. There are so many changes that go on in the female body throughout our life time. Well, let’s face it… throughout any given day, in any given week, in any given month, in any given life time. Two particular obstacles that keep arising in my conversations with women about their health & fitness goals are a weak pelvic floor & diastasis recti or abdominal separation amongst women during pregnancy.
In relation to assessment & intervention for pelvic floor issues postpartum there’s an informative podcast with Brisbane based physiotherapist, Lori Forner. Forner details assessment protocols for the pelvic floor & touches on abdominal separation. She is cautious about postpartum exercise with a preference for exercises that are carried out already through the “functional activities” we already do in any given day as a mum. Lifting children, pushing a pram, sitting, standing. Be warned…she’s not a fan of sit ups and crunches. Forner is encouraging of postpartum women promoting strength through day to day activities with a huge emphasis on individual assessment of postpartum pelvic floor and abdominal strength with a health professional.
When it comes to getting your sweat on with abdominal separation specifically, check out Girls Gone Strong for tips on how to conduct a self-assessment &, if you sign up for their newsletter, you can grab a free booklet detailing post pregnancy exercise tips. Further information pertaining to exercise & abdominal separation can also be sourced via the Fitness Network. For further pelvic floor specific exercise tips & info, check out Pelvic Floor First.
The common theme throughout the information gleaned regarding the pelvic floor & abdominal separation is that “everybody’s different”. So…as with all exercise, make sure you speak to your doctor to get the go ahead & don’t be shy to ask a Personal Trainer for advice regarding the how-to’s & form with any exercise. Health & fitness professionals are important members of your team. Invite them to join you on your journey to being your personal best.
For even more info & inspo check out #pelvicmafia on Twitter.
It’s your body. Get advice. Get practising. You’re worth it.