Working in the womens’ health world, I have moms who regularly come to me for advice and guidance. It doesn’t take long to see common themes. On one side of the spectrum I see moms who are looking to ‘get in shape’ and ‘lose the weight’ and on the other side I see those that are terrified to move because they are so confused with all of the information out there on what NOT to do.
I know that moms take some time to heal, rest and wrap their heads around having a baby and when they feel ready (whether this is 3 weeks or 3 years after their baby is born), they start back at exercise. The problem I see is that women jump into activities that their bodies aren’t ready for.
There are many exercise options out there marketed towards moms; running groups, bootcamps, mom and baby yoga, stroller fitness and the list goes on. For many women, these can be a great option. The problem is that there are so many moms out there that don’t want to be at these classes or even walk around the block because they leak, they feel like their insides are falling out, or something hurts. Most often the reason for these problems is poor core strength stemming from pregnancy and delivery. Although pregnancy is such a miracle and a beautiful thing our body goes through, it changes things! Our core muscles (which include the pelvic floor) are stretched, weak and often injured or damaged. Since our core muscles are meant to be the foundation or anchor for our body, when they aren’t working properly, things break down and that’s when you notice symptoms like leaking, prolapse, back pain, pelvic pain.
There is a gap in care for the postnatal mom who wants to get back to activity; anything from marathon running and weight lifting to gardening and playing with your kids.
I recognize that there needs to be some information and guidance that takes moms from the healing phase into the activity of their choice. There needed to be a program that would not only educate moms on the pelvic floor and its role as part of the core muscles, but also how to fire up those muscles after all they have been through. It needed to start safely, slowly and in a smart way.
Through her own personal journey and clinical experience, she recognizes there needs to be more quality information for new moms.
Melissa is behind the scenes of Mommy Berries. She is a pelvic health physical therapist dedicated to Women’s health. Melissa struggled with leaking, diastasis and multiple injuries while trying to get back to her active lifestyle.
Credit to Amy Rauscher who was instrumental in the vision and development of Mommy Berries.