Perhaps this might help…
What can you do?
- It is important to stay active. This could be “pottering” around your house or garden, or a light walk outside;
- Pelvic floor exercises should be done at all stages of pregnancy to both assist the birth process and aid recovery postpartum. Try practising a contraction as if to stop the passing of urine and at the same time a contraction as if to stop the passing of wind (focus on an internal contraction as opposed to a clenching of the buttocks), hold this contraction for 3 seconds, keep breathing throughout, then relax the muscles fully. Try 10 repetitions and aim for multiple sets per day e.g. every time you sit on the toilet, having already emptied your bladder;
- Spinal mobility exercises are also recommended for pregnancy. You could try Yoga exercises such as Cat:Cow (for spinal flexion/extension), Tail Wag (for spinal side bending), and Threading the Needle (for spinal rotation). Please check with your therapist if you are unsure about these exercises;
- Pelvic stability exercises are equally as important in pregnancy. One you could try; find a neutral position on all fours. Breath in and lift your knees up from the floor slightly (2cm maximum), hold for a breath cycle and on the exhalation relax back on to all fours. Make sure you keep your spine neutral throughout the movement and focus on strength in your abdominals. Try 10 repetitions, twice per day. Again, please check with your therapist if you are unsure about this exercise;
- Remember exercises such as those described above can be done on a bed (to stop you having to get up and down from the floor) and leaning on fists as opposed to the palms of your hands (if you have carpal tunnel syndrome);
- Keep your knees together! For example, when turning in bed or getting in/out of a car move as if your thighs are glued together. This is to prevent unnecessary strain on your pelvis;
- Make sure you are drinking enough fluids. Keeping an eye on the colour of your urine is a good indicator of your hydration (Too dark? Drink more!); and
- Try to find some time for meditation or mindfulness practice. This will help prepare your body and mind for labour.
Need further advice?
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If you are unsure about any of the advice described here today, please consult one of our team for further guidance.
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