Top 3 Barre Modifications for Pregnancy by Bar Method Boston•
Posted on January 30 2021
Bar Method Boston is excited to team up with Tadpole to share the benefits of barre during pregnancy. Many forms of exercise are great during pregnancy, but we think barre is the safest and most effective workout for both mom and baby. In this post we’ll share the benefits of working out during pregnancy and some modifications to keep you and your little one safe during this special time.
If you aren’t familiar with our classes, each Bar Method class starts with upper body exercises, followed by leg and glute work at the barre, and ends with core exercises on the floor. We focus on isometric movements combined with stretching to create strong lean muscles, and students will see results in just a few weeks!
For most healthy pregnant women, exercise is the best way to have a successful pregnancy and results in a speedy recovery after birth. With the consent of your physician, women should continue to exercise while pregnant and start to modify some positions at 20 weeks.
The Bar Method has a physical therapist on staff who has created modifications with the advice of an obstetrician to ensure the safest and most effective workout for pre- and post-natal clients. Here are three of the best modifications and practices for working out while pregnant, all demonstrated by Bar Method Boston instructor Christina Dioguardi.
- Focus on back safety by modifying glute work
An important thing to consider during pregnancy is back safety when working out. When a woman’s uterus becomes heavy at 20 weeks, women should no longer do any exercises where they are bent over and their spine is parallel to the floor. The weight of the uterus is too heavy for the low back in this position, and there is also risk of a woman falling due to poor balance and circulation in any position where she is facing the floor with her leg high. Watch our instructor Christina’s video of a glute exercise where her torso is in a safe position and her back is protected.
- Modify core exercises to increase blood flow
Working the abdomen during pregnancy will create strong muscles and can result in a better recovery. However, it is important to do so in a safe way. Always consider blood flow in any exercises when a pregnant woman sits on the floor leaning back with the pelvis tilted. In most workouts this primarily affects core exercises, or what we call "curl" at the Bar Method. In core exercises with one or both legs up the heavy 20+ week uterus falls back towards the spine and puts pressure on certain blood vessels and veins. This can cause pregnant women to feel faint and can cause calf and uterine cramping. Therefore, we recommend that clients, at or after 20 weeks into pregnancy, use enough support behind their back to keep the pelvis tilted forward and to keep both feet flat on the floor. Check out Christina’s tips below to get the most out of abdominal work during pregnancy:
- Avoid Twisting
Keeping up with stretching during pregnancy is a great way to improve your range of motion, reduce pain, and relieve stress. However, women should avoid any twisting exercise or stretch while pregnant. This can potentially strain the abdominal muscles and restrict blood flow to the uterus. Here are some stretching options that are safe and will feel good during pregnancy:
Most importantly, exercise during pregnancy will make you feel good! What you do during pregnancy helps set the tone for postpartum health, both mentally and physically. Studies show that women who exercise during pregnancy are able to resume a workout routine in the postpartum period more quickly. Working out is also directly linked to mood elevation. Women with lower stress during pregnancy are much less likely to experience depression after pregnancy. At Bar Method Boston we have a strong community of women, virtually and in person, to help take the stress out of working out and make you feel confident about your barre routine.
If you’re interested in trying Bar Method out for yourself, clients of Tadpole (pregnant or not!) can get the New Client Special: One month of unlimited classes for $49 (reg. $99) with code: TADPOLE. Click here to purchase. Questions? Email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thanks for watching!
*Text and videos for this blog post were provided by the Bar Method Boston instructors.
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