Mom and Baby At-Home Strength Workout

Fitness: Workouts

By: // March 14, 2017


Whether you’ve just had your first or fourth child, any new mama knows it’s a whole new world after you give birth. Life changes in so many beautiful and unexpected ways, and responsibilities keep piling up. Many new mothers want to exercise after giving birth but making time for workouts post-partum is the biggest challenge. Even if you do find time for exercise, setting up child-care or bringing a new baby to the gym isn’t always possible. Getting a workout at home can be difficult too—to say the least. Rookies might think your baby’s nap-time is the perfect spot in the day for exercise! However, most new moms know that if your newborn is quiet or napping for a bit, you want that time to nap yourself or catch up on the never ending items that have piled up during your baby’s awake-time.

The solution? Workout WITH your baby at home! Yes, it sounds a little crazy. Yes, we want you to ENJOY your baby and not worry about working out right away. But if you find yourself craving some physical activity but can’t leave baby just yet, this mom and baby postpartum workout is just the solution. Still skeptical? Read on.

Why Should I Exercise After Childbirth?

Mom and new baby

Some women can’t wait to get moving again after having a baby, while others are happy to have a break. Of course the exhaustion that occurs from having a newborn can be a bit of a deterrent. But the truth is that a little bit of movement can provide a short burst of energy and oftentimes give you a mood boost when dealing with those challenging but rewarding days. In addition to giving you more energy, exercise will also:

  • help build strength to carry your baby
  • improve your self-esteem
  • set an example for your family about living a healthy life

Related: 10-Minute Postpartum Power Workout

When Can I Start Exercising After Childbirth?

Your birth experience, your recovery, and the type of activity you choose will determine how soon you can begin to exercise. According to The Mayo Clinic, if you had an uncomplicated vaginal delivery it’s generally safe to begin light, easy exercise as soon as you feel ready—up to a few days after giving birth (not that we are suggesting you rush home from the hospital to do squats…). If you’ve had a C-section, extensive vaginal repair, or a complicated birth, talk to your health care provider about when to start an exercise program.

In terms of more intense activity or strength training, it will take longer before your body is prepared. For the workout below it’s probably best to wait about 6 weeks since you’ll be lifting, pushing and squatting. The best thing you can do is ask your doctor to be sure you are safe. In addition, listening to your body is key. If something feels off or wrong, trust your gut and stop doing it. There will be plenty of time to get in shape and there are other things you can choose in the mean time. Finally, if you are experiencing diastasis recti make sure you read this first before taking on a workout!

Mom & Baby At-Home Strength Workout

Once you feel ready, start with some walking, jogging or other lower-intensity cardio. After several weeks, you can get back in the swing of things using this at-home postpartum strength workout.

For this workout you only need a good pair of shoes, a mat and your baby! For a few exercises you will want to make sure your baby is old enough to hold his/her head up without support. If that’s not the case, just skip those few since there are other great moves here that you will still love! And remember, if baby is crabby and not in the mood for this—let it go! Head out for a basic stroller walk instead or just wait until the right time. It’s better to have a positive experience with your workout for both your sake and baby’s, than to muddle through tears and frustration just to get the workout in.

Reverse Lunge With Baby Hug Twist

Reverse lunge with baby.

  1. Hug your baby close to your chest with both arms.
  2. Step right foot back, bending both knees into a lunge.
  3. Gently twist your baby over left thigh, then return to center.
  4. Step forward and repeat on other side. Try for 8-10 per leg.

Baby Kiss Push-Ups

Push up with baby

Mom and baby workout

  1. Place your baby on his/her back at the top of a mat.
  2. Place your hands on each side of your baby’s middle.
  3. Lift your torso and legs into a plank or kneeling plank
  4. Lower your chest to hover above baby, giving him/her a kiss.
  5. Press your body back up to plank and repeat. Try 8-10 reps.

Squat Overhead Baby Press

Try this exercise with your baby.

  1. Hold baby’s sides with both hands, with baby in front of your chest and your elbows close to your side.
  2. Place feet hip-distance apart and soften knees.
  3. Sit back into a squat, keeping weight over heels and abs very tight.
  4. Stand back up and press your baby up overhead making a funny face or sound.
  5. Pull baby gently back to chest-level as you squat and repeat. Try 8-10 reps.

Baby Tricep Press

Mom and baby arm workout

Try this tricep press up for strength after baby.

  1. Lay back on your mat, holding your baby around his/her middle
  2. Put baby’s face over your face with your elbows close to your side.
  3. Press baby up, lengthening arms and squeezing your triceps.
  4. Lower baby down and say “boo,” keep elbows pulled inward.
  5. Press baby up and repeat. Try 8-10 reps.

Plié Front Baby Press

  1. Stand with feet shoulder-width apart, toes turned outward.
  2. Hold baby with hands around sides, right in front of your chest.
  3. Keep spine straight and drop tailbone down between heels while pushing baby away from you. Do NOT straighten arms 100%; keep a slight bend in your elbow.
  4. Press body straight up, doing a kegel (tightening your pelvic floor) and pulling baby back in with a “boo.”
  5. Try 8-10 reps.

Army Crawl Baby Kisses

Army crawl push up

Army crawl push up with baby

  1. Place your baby on his/her back at the top of a mat.
  2. Place your hands on each side of your baby’s middle.
  3. Lift your torso and legs into a plank or kneeling plank
  4. Lower to one forearm at a time keeping abs tight and give baby a kiss.
  5. Press your body back up to plank and repeat. Try 8-10 reps.

(if this is too hard for you, hold a forearm plank over your baby for 30 seconds instead)

Walking Lunges, Baby Style

Postpartum workout

  1. Hold baby close to your body facing away.
  2. Take a big step with right leg and slowly bend both knees into lunge.
  3. Step back foot to meet front foot, then repeat, moving forward onto left leg.
  4. Take 8-10 walking lunges forward, then turn around and take 8-10 back to start.

Abdominal Baby Push-Away

Try abdominal push-aways.

  1. Lying on your back, bend your knees at a 90 degree angle. Stabilize baby so he/she is resting on your shins, and hold onto his/her hands.
  2. Slowly extend your legs away from you and curl your upper body forward, holding onto baby’s hands until they are as far as you can reach. Keep low abs pulled down into spine.
  3. Bring knees back into chest. Try 8-10 times

READ THIS NEXT: Postpartum Pilates


Printed from GetHealthyU.com

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