I'm a fitness whizz – five easy moves to start strengthening your post baby body & why sit-ups are the worst thing to do | The Sun

FOR the majority of new mums, exercise might not be the biggest priority.

But it's important to strengthen your body and muscles after you've given birth.

According to the NHS, you can start gently exercising as soon as you feel up to it, if you've had a straightforward birth.

But you should wait until your six week postnatal check before beginning any high-impact exercises, such as aerobics or running.

However, if you feel ready, there are some exercises you can start with as you get used to your new life as a mother.

Pelvic floor

Having been through pregnancy, you'll be well aware of the importance of exercising your pelvic floor muscles.

These muscles strengthen the muscles around your bladder, vagina and bottom. 

To exercise them, imagine you're trying to stop the flow of urine.

You can tighten for long periods, or short bursts, but make sure you keep breathing normally throughout.

The NHS advises building up to "10 repeats of each exercise, at least 3 times a day".

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You need to be very careful when it comes to stomach exercises after giving birth.

It's very common for the two muscles that run down the middle of the stomach to separate – which is known as diastasis recti.

It can often go back to normal by the time your baby is eight weeks old, but there are exercises you can do to help strengthen your stomach.

Start by laying on your side with your knees slightly bent.

Let your stomach relax and begin breathing gently.

As you exhale, draw in the lower part of your stomach (imagine you're tightening corset strings), while squeezing your pelvic floor muscles at the same time.

Hold for a count of 10, breathing normally, and then release gently.

Repeat up to 10 times.

Whatever you do, don't do sit ups – that can end up separating your muscles further, sometimes beyond repair.


Pregnancy can have a massive impact on your posture.

This is because your uterus shifts your centre of gravity forward by the second trimester, and leads to the pelvis tilting.

As such, practising pelvic tilts postpartum can be incredibly helpful.

To do a pelvic tilt, lay on your back and bend your knees to a 90 degree angle, with your feet flat on the floor.

Then, lift up your hips from the floor and squeeze your bottom muscles together.

Try and do about 10 of these every morning if you can manage it.


As a new mum, you'll undoubtedly quickly get used to lugging things around – a car seat, a nappy bag, a travel cot.

But you must be careful not to lift too much – doing so can lead to irreversible damage.

However, there are some gentle arm exercises you can do to strengthen your upper body.

Start by getting a lower weight dumbbell – something like a 0.5 or 1kg weight – and follow Moms Into Fitness' Lindsay's instructions.

"Start by standing with your feet facing forward, slightly apart," she said.

"Hold a dumbbell in each hand with your arms at a ninety degree angle, dumbbells at your stomach.

"Raise the dumbbell in your right hand straight up over your head and, at the same time, lower the left dumbbell down by your side.

"Return both hands to the starting position. Repeat but this time, raise the left dumbbell and lower the right."


Squats are a brilliant way to strengthen your legs – and you can get your baby involved too.

If you have a sling, strap baby to your chest, and get bending.

If you have an older baby, you can hold them in front of you while squatting.

Stand with your feet a little further than hip width apart, and slightly turn out your toes.

Breathe in and, as you do so, bend at the hip.

Push your bottom back as your knees bend.

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Make sure you keep your back straight, with a neutral spine – like you're about to sit down on a chair.

Squeeze your pelvic floor and abs as you return to a standing position.

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