When can I get back to running? Am I okay to play tennis this weekend? These are common questions asked by new mothers during the postnatal period. After pregnancy, your fitness goals can still be achieved, but it’s important to remember that your body has been through a transforming journey and extra steps may be required before returning to sports after pregnancy.
Returning to sports after pregnancy
The pelvic floor is often weak and injured after pregnancy. When you perform exercises, the physical force of your foot landing on the ground can be felt as the abdominal contents press down on the pelvic floor. This adds strain to the pelvic floor and abdominal muscles, which can be too much for your muscles to control. To avoid becoming symptomatic, our women’s health physios can take you through pelvic floor exercises and put you on a personalised strengthening program.
The abdominal muscles stretch during pregnancy. This can often lead to diastasis rectus abdominis, which is when the outer abdominal muscles are stretched. We recommend you see a women’s health physio for an assessment of the abdomen, hips and lower back before returning to high impact activities.
Book a pelvic floor assessment in Sydney
Your return to sports after a long period off should always be preceded with a fitness assessment. Sometimes there can be a year between the pregnancy and postnatal period before your body is ready to return to sports. It is key to find the areas that may put you at risk of injury! Our postnatal physiotherapists will look at your strength and control in different movements to see if key muscle groups are strong enough for you to return to sport. Return to running or other high-impact sports isn’t recommended in the first 3 months post-pregnancy.
Having tailored support from Sports Focus is essential. Our post-pregnancy physiotherapists can give you personalised guidance to help you safely return to doing what you enjoy.