Celebrating New Moms!
Today we celebrate Mothers everywhere in anticipation for Mothers Day on May 13th, 2018. Vlog Mom Summer Brooke sits down with Physical Therapist Brittany Ellers to have all her post-baby questions about Physical Therapy answered.
Neck and Shoulder Tension
Ellers explains that in between feeding and holding your new baby, you should always give yourself some time to stretch out the shoulders and the neck. This will help avoid shortening muscles that can cause long-standing pain. You can use a foam roller to allow a deeper stretch and opening of the pectoral muscles which attach to the front of the shoulder and the rib cage. Once you’ve stretched and avoided any shortening, you can focus on strengthening your back muscles.
Try sitting with good posture and squeezing your shoulder blades down and back and hold for 5-10 seconds whenever you have free time to begin the strengthening process.
Often times new moms will hold their babies against their hips which can cause tension to build up as the hip is coming outward to hold the weight of the baby. Eller recommends to always be mindful that your hip is at an uncomfortable angle and to constantly switch up how you’re holding the baby to avoid relying so much on the hips. Always be mindful of the way you stand to avoid placing too much weight to one side of the hip versus the other. Keep your pelvis leveled to avoid any discomfort and try single-leg balancing exercises to train the hips and pelvis to remain leveled. Lunges are also good to strengthen these muscles.
Find your hip bones, roll inward with your fingers, and give out a laugh to contract the lower abdominal muscles. Hold this position for as long as you can while you breathe. For beginners, try this exercise on your back, on the floor with your knees bent. To avoid compromising your core strength, stand tall and maintain proper posture while holding and carrying the baby. When lifting, lift up from the legs and not the rounding of the back.