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Postpartum exercises help strengthen the abdomen and pelvis, improve posture, relieve stress, avoid postpartum depression, improve mood and sleep, and help you lose weight.
Generally, exercises can be started 15 days after vaginal delivery or 6 to 8 weeks after cesarean section, as long as the obstetrician allows physical activities. Therefore, it is always important to follow up with a doctor and check if the exercises can be done so as not to compromise recovery.
Postpartum exercises can be done at home and should not consume a lot of calories, so that they do not interfere with the production of breast milk and do not interfere with the breastfeeding process.During or after performing the exercises, if you experience any discomfort or if there is blood loss from the vagina, you should stop performing the exercise immediately and inform your doctor.
Pelvic floor exercises
Some pelvic floor exercises that can be done include:
1. Basic Perineum Contraction Exercise
The basic perineal contraction exercise can be done right after childbirth to help strengthen the pelvic floor and fight urinary incontinence.
How to: Lie on your back and bend your legs. Contract the perineum for 5 to 10 seconds as if holding urine. At the same time, contract the anus as if trapping the stool. To relax. Do 10 sets of 10 contractions a day.
2. Advanced Perineum Contraction Exercise
Advanced perineal contraction exercise works the pelvic floor muscles and also helps in strengthening the abdomen. This exercise must be done with the help of a ball.
How to: with your back to a wall, place the ball between the wall and your back. With your feet shoulder-width apart, contract your pelvic floor and abdomen. Bend your knees as if you were sitting in an invisible chair. The lumbar spine must not lose contact with the ball and the movement must be done by molding the spine to the ball. Stay in this position for 5 seconds and return to the starting position. Repeat the exercise 3 times.
3. Kegel Exercises
Kegel exercises are a good option to strengthen the pelvic floor muscles, fight urinary incontinence and improve intimate contact, for example. See how to do kegel exercises.
Exercises for the abdomen
After medical clearance, postpartum abdominal exercises can be done 2 to 3 times a week, in 3 sets of 10 to 20 repetitions each.
The bridge is an exercise that helps to strengthen the abdomen, buttocks and thighs, as well as helping to stabilize the pelvic floor.
How to: Lie on your back, arms in line with your body, bend your knees and place your feet on the floor. Contract your pelvis, abdomen and glutes and lift your hips off the floor, without touching your butt to the floor. Hold this position for 10 seconds and lower your hips.
2. Abdominal with ball
The sit-up is a good option to help strengthen the abdomen and can be done with the help of a ball.
How to: Lie on your back, arms in line with your body and place the ball between your legs, at ankle height.Lift your legs with the ball, bending your knees, as if sitting in an invisible chair. Return to the starting position, relax and repeat the movement 10 to 15 times.
The plank is an exercise that helps to strengthen the abdomen, improve posture, increase metabolism, in addition to helping with body balance.
How to: Lie on your stomach and then raise your body, supporting only your forearms and toes on the floor, always with your abdomen contracted and your head and body straight, in line with the spine. Stay in this position for 30 to 60 seconds. Another option, if you have difficulty doing the plank with your toes, is to support your body with your knees.
4. Hypopressive gymnastics
Hypopressive gymnastics is an excellent option for postpartum exercise to tone the abdomen, in addition to strengthening the pelvic floor, fighting urinary incontinence and improving local blood flow, which improves sexual performance.
Watch the video on how to do hypopressive gymnastics.
Care during exercise
Some precautions to be taken during postpartum exercises are:
- Stay hydrated to avoid dehydration of the body and not impair milk production;
- Start activities slowly and gradually, gradually increasing the intensity, respecting the body's limits to avoid the appearance of injuries or compromising postpartum recovery;
- Wear comfortable clothes and a supportive bra if breastfeeding to avoid discomfort during physical activity.
In addition, if you experience abdominal pain, vaginal bleeding, or sudden discomfort in the pelvic area, you should stop physical activity immediately and report it to your doctor.