Postpartum? Here Is Why You Should Be Exercising

From reconnecting your abdominal muscles, to claiming back some "me-time" in the whirlwind that is having a baby – exercise is essential to both your physical and mental health through every stage of your motherhood journey.

Postpartum? Here Is Why You Should Be Exercising

With all the beauty and empowerment that comes with early motherhood, there are also many challenges – sleep-deprivation, exhaustion, brain fog, muscle stiffness, and more. While sleep cannot be replaced, there are some other factors that will help you feel more yourself, more energised, and more confident in the postpartum period. A strong support network, balanced nutrition, and a regular movement practice are just a few ways to make this period easier and more enjoyable for you. Let's talk about postpartum exercise, specifically postpartum Pilates, and its many benefits.


The Benefits of Postnatal Pilates


  1. Reconnect your abdominal muscles.
  2. Restrengthen your pelvic floor.
  3. Relieve muscle tension in tight areas.
  4. Endorphin release to boost your mood.
  5. Improved sleep.
  6. Full body strengthening, which in turn improves the way you move in everyday life.
  7. Improved circulation and heart health.


How to Return to Exercise


This will look different for every body, however as a general rule, you can think about resuming exercise from 6-weeks postpartum. We recommend having a full physio Mummy MOT to thoroughly check your pelvic floor strength and abdominal separation.


Once you have had physio (or GP) clearance to return to exercise, we recommend starting with low-impact movement that allows you to focus on your form, connect your breath with the movement, and execute each exercise with a strong mind-body connection. Pilates ticks all of these boxes. Here are some Postpartum Pilates areas of focus we suggest to get started with:


Pelvic Floor Strengthening

Your pelvic floor takes a huge hit during pregnancy and birth. Even if you have been dedicated to your kegels, this is where you'll need to begin your work. Start with Pelvic Curls, Hip Rolls and Bridges on your back to help reawaken your pelvic floor and realign your pelvis.

Our Core and Pelvic Floor classes will run you through some of the best exercises for pelvic floor strengthening.


Abdominal Activation

Naturally your abdominals are going to separate to some extent as you grow throughout pregnancy. When you are ready to exercise again, reconnecting your abdominal muscles before graduating to more challenging ab exercises is key. Start with Ab Preps, Toe Taps and Side Bends to start switching your abs back on.

Our Postnatal class series has a strong focus on reactivating your abs, as do our Core and Pelvic Floor classes.


Glute Activation

During pregnancy it's common to lose muscle in your glutes. This can be a result of spending more time seated, poor posture from a growing bump, as well as hormonal changes in your body. Reactivating your glutes and beginning to strengthen and build them back up is a key part of getting a strong postpartum body.

Alongside our Postnatal class series and Core and Pelvic Floor classes, you can put more focus on reactivating and restrengthening your glutes with our series of Lower Body-focussed classes.



Stiff muscles are super common once you have a baby – neck, shoulders, chest, back, hip flexors, hamstrings, and more.

Use our Stretch classes to release the imbalances that arise from feeding, lifting, carrying and nurturing your baby.


To join the Pilates By Bel live online Mums & Bubs Pilates Class, start your free trial here – this weekly class is free for all PBB Members. We also have an on-demand 4-Week Postnatal Pilates Plan if you prefer more flexibility in time. Access this plan whenever, wherever you like, and follow the weekly schedule to keep yourself motivated and accountable.

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Let's Get Physical

Let's Get Physical

Pilates By Bel is an online pilates studio designed to make daily movement accessible and enjoyable for all.

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