7 Benefits of exercising with a new baby
There are many classes available that you can take your baby too, some are indoors and some outdoors. You may think exercise is the last thing you want to do at the minute but there are so many benefits of exercising with a new baby;
Exercising with a new baby is a great way to meet other mums, often exercises involve working in groups or pairs which encourages mums to interact with each other and share their stories and dramas of being a mum, in fact once the conversation starts flowing you forget you are exercising!
At the end of a session mums often head to the local café for a coffee and cake!! (well you’ve earned it) and some instructors organise social night’s out.
Choosing an outdoor exercise class is great for both you and baby as it can help with sleep. As well as the fresh air the changing scenary and colours provides mental stimulation for you and baby and as an added bonus you both get your vitamin D which is essential for bone health and your immune system.
Improved confidence and body image
Pregnancy can lead to changes in body shape that can be difficult to accept leading to low self-esteem. Seeing results such as an increase in fitness, strength and muscle tone can help you to feel better about yourself. I have had mums who couldn’t exercise for longer than a couplr of minutes without being breathless at their first class to doing a 5k park run 3 months later something which they never thought they would have been able to do, the sense of achievement really boosts confidence.
Improved Mental Wellbeing
Reduces the risk of stress and postnatal depression – exercise releases feel good chemicals in the brain like dopamine and endorphins and helps to regulate stress hormones like cortisol and adrenaline.
Yes I know you probably feel exercise is the last thing on your mind after a sleepless night, but exercise gets the heart pumping which enables more oxygen to get to the brain and blood to circulate more efficiently to muscles, helping you to feel more energetic and alert.
A bit of ‘you’ time
Its important to have bit of time to do something for you. Going to a class with your baby stops any feelings of guilt about leaving them and if you are breastfeeding at least you can feed baby. Its common for babies to become unsettled and its not a problem for the instructors most of them are mums and have been in the same position, You may even get an instructor that rocks the pushchair and entertains the baby for you!
Choosing a specific postnatal exercise class led by a suitably qualified instructor enables you to workout in a safe and gradual manner at a level appropriate for your postnatal recovery. A good instructor should also offer mums a tummy check to assess for any abdominal separation and provide advice around pelvic floor and joint health during exercise.
This expert article was written by Donna and Bumps and beyond a fitness group in ****