The most important and awaited need is to get some ease off the backache we suffer constantly.
Back, Lower Back and Abdomen exercises
Majorly all mothers suffer from back muscle stiffening, backache & acute pain in lower back post delivery for a long long period of time. After 1 year past, I still get such pains occasionally. Though at the time of stretching you'll feel the pain, but believe me you'll be more relaxed afterwards.
1. Cat and cow position
Get into crawling position with knees just below your hips. Exhale & gently arch your spine. Inhale, tighten your core muscles & round your back, like a cat. Move slowly between movements and hold in each position for 5-10 seconds. Repeat 10 times.
2. Knee to chest / pawan-muktasan
Use this stretch to align pelvis and stretch lower back and rear end muscles. Lie flat on your back with toes pointed to the sky. Slowly bend your knees & pull your legs up to you chest. Wrap your arms around your thigh, knee or shin, and gently pull the knees towards your chest. Hold for 20 sec repeat 5 times.
You can even hold your baby on your calf muscles and make them have a swing ride like shown in the image. It'll boost you to engage in this activity more, the bonus are your baby's giggles
3. Lying Knee Twist
Use this movement to stretch the paraspinal muscles (whole of your back muscles running along the spine) & strengthen the abdominal muscles.
Lie on your back with your legs extended straight out. Bend the right knee up and cross it over the left side of your body. Hold in a position that allows you to feel a gentle stretch through the back and buttocks muscles for 20 seconds. Tighten your core muscles and rotate back to center. Do this 3 times with each leg.
4. Cobra Stretch/ Bhujang-asan
Lay on your stomach with your legs extended, with palms on either side of your head with your forearms and elbows flat on the ground. Slowly, push your body upwards, so your weight is resting on your forearms. Be sure to keep your hips on the ground. Once you reach a comfortable position that gently stretch your abdominal muscles and lower back, hold for 10 seconds. Repeat 5 times
This shall also help you in relieving menstrual irregularities and breathing difficulties.
Planks is a midway push up, & is milder form than either push-up, sit-ups or crunches. Planks are milder on body of a new mom. How to do a plank:
Get into a pushup position with knees and palms on the ground. Lower yourself onto your elbows. Lift your knees off the ground. Straighten your body.
Your feet, hips, and shoulders should make a straight line.Hold this position for 30 seconds (not more, as you'll get fatigue) keeping your ab and hip muscles tight and your form straight. Repeat 2-4 times
6. Locust pose/ shalabh-asan
This could be followed 5 to 10 minutes after the 2 above mentioned stretchings.
Lie on your belly and lift your legs and hands simultaneously and you'll feel stretch at whole of your back, neck region and thighs. Hold for 2 to 5 breaths. If you feel pain, stop immediately. Slowly rest your feet first then your chin.
I hope these would be helpful to you, especially when you've got a clingy toddler around. Engage your baby with you by playing music while you stretch out and you'll see them mastering some asanas before you could!
Also read: Get Back In Shape Without Hitting The Gym
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