Pregancy During Pilates
Laila Juntunen is one of InSync’s Pilates and exercise rehabilitation practitioners. Laila has a special interest in women’s health and has undertaken specific training for Pilates both during and after pregnancy. Laila, in addition to her work at InSync, has also worked with clients within a specialised women’s health setting and received ongoing professional training and development around the impact of movement on conditions women commonly face during these changes to their bodies. Here Laila has a put together some of the ways that Pilates within a clinical environment can support you and your body through and beyond your pregnancy.
Pilates is a great addition to your pregnancy management.
Pilates is a great addition to your pregnancy management. Offering a variety of low-impact exercises tailored to your needs, Pilates instruction is provided at InSync by educated practitioners who can guide you through your pregnancy journey to ensure that you strengthen and exercise your body safely. We can work with you and your health team to provide an additional level of support that standard fitness practitioners may not be able to accommodate.
Pilates can develop good support for the prevention or relief of back pain, pelvic girdle pain, or abdominal separation you may experience through your pregnancy.
Antenatal Pilates provides strength and stability focused on your needs, including your pelvic floor, your back and care for your changing body. It offers flexibility to adapt to your changing needs as your pregnancy progresses.
Pilates can be an excellent tool to help manage pelvic girdle pain and help you stay active and fit during your pregnancy.
It is estimated 1 in 5 women experience some degree of pelvic girdle pain, or pubic symphysis disfunction, during pregnancy. Symptoms to keep an eye out for include pain over the front of your pubic bone or across one or both sides of your lower back. Pain may radiate to your thighs and is often most noticeable when standing on one leg, such as walking upstairs.
Early diagnosis and management, including a Pilates programme, can minimise these symptoms.
Pilates following your pregnancy focuses on the recovery of strength, endurance and function of the pelvic muscles and abdominal muscles. Attention to chest mobility and pelvic stability is also included in the care of your body through Pilates.
It is common following pregnancy to have a degree of abdominal separation (diastasis recti) or leaking when laughing/sneezing/lifting (stress incontinence). Pilates can support your management of these occurrences.
Abdominal separation can occur during pregnancy when the body is accommodating your growing baby and is completely normal. Time is often all that is required to heal this separation but, in the interim, you may notice back pain and abdominal weakness. In this condition, certain exercises may cause excess strain or place too much pressure on the abdominals, compromising the healing.
A tailored Pilates programme by suitably-trained practitioners minimises the potential for damage and ensures that all movements work to safely progress your recovery.
Bladder or bowel weakness - incontinence - is a common problem, affecting 4.8 million Australians. Women experience incontinence more frequently and the Continence Foundation of Australia estimates 1 in 3 women who have ever had a baby report some degree of urinary incontinence*.
Our practitioners can discuss any concerns you may have about any of these symptoms you may be experiencing and ensure your programming comprises pelvic floor safe exercises that are personalised to your needs or recommend you to the appropriate specialist.
*[Source: One In Three Women Who Ever Had A Baby Wet Themselves Booklet, <https://www.continence.org.au/resource/one-three-women-who-ever-had-baby-wet-themselves-booklet>]