A gift for Moms… “Mom Posture” solutions
What is mom posture? Postural problems can occur when any person remains in any one position for prolonged periods of time. Moms are especially prone to problems with posture while caring for our babies and kids. You often don’t think about the postural strain a mom’s body is under when she is looking down at her baby while breastfeeding, sitting while holding her baby for a nap because she can’t put them down, or playing with her kids in a strained position on the floor.
Prolonged positions hold one group of muscles in contraction (tighten state) and the opposing muscle group in a relaxed or weakened state. For example, when you are sitting, your hip flexors on the front of your hips are contracted and your glutes and low back muscles are relaxed. The longer we stay in this position the worse this muscle imbalance becomes—your hip flexors remain too tight and your glutes and low back muscles become weakened and it all hurts when we try to stand up. These muscle and posture changes lead to issues such as low back pain, sciatica, neck pain, shoulder pain, headaches and that dreaded ache between your shoulder blades.
Here are a few exercises to help with mom posture… don’t worry, you won’t need a gym membership! All of these stretches and exercises can be done at home or even crib-side!
Chin Tucks: To do chin tucks, all you have to do is contract the muscles of your neck as you create a “double chin” position. Hold this position for several seconds, and repeat for 8-10 repetitions. This is helpful to counteract looking down at your baby (or computer) all day!
Wall Downward Facing Dog: Place your out-stretched hands against a wall shoulder-width apart. Try to bring your head and chest down toward the floor while keeping your hands firmly in place. You should feel a stretch in your chest and on your sides. Hold this position for 30 seconds, making sure to take deep breaths as you hold it. You should feel this stretch in your mid-back.
Cat/Cow Stretch: on all fours alternate from arching your back toward the ceiling and pressing your chest down toward the table/floor. Hold each position for 10 seconds and repeat. You should feel this in your mid back.
Rocking Hip Flexor Stretch: Kneel down on one knee while keeping your other knee bent at a 90 degree angle, lean forward while maintaining a neutral spine. Rock back and forth in a slow controlled manner for the desired number of repetitions. Repeat on both sides.
Glute bridge: lie on your back with your feet on the floor. Press your spine into the floor, tighten your glutes and lift your hips off the floor, hold for 5 seconds, lower and repeat 10x.
Please ask one of your Chiropractors for helpful exercise tips and tricks! Many of us are moms and know the pain you’re experiencing…..we are here to help!