As a Mom, you’ve already got so much on your plate. There are physical needs to be met like little babies to be rocked, toddlers to be fed, kids to be dropped off to school. As well as emotional needs to fill, like kisses on a hurt knee, hugs to reassure a worried heart, laughs to share, and so many moments to be enjoyed. Not to mention all of your personal needs as a mama, woman, and individual. Finding the right postpartum exercise program should not be one of those things on your overflowing plate!
There are a ton of at-home postpartum exercise programs in your timeline but choosing one can be exhausting, and you haven’t even started working out yet!
If you’re a mom looking online for answers to postpartum symptoms and issues, you may be feeling overwhelmed by the huge amount of information out there, not to mention the scary stuff that Dr Google has to offer. You are wondering how you can get the answers you want and to be sure you’re investing your time and money in the right postpartum exercise program that works for you.
I completely understand. You need a program that meets both your physical needs of healing but also your emotional needs for community. So I want to make this easy for you. I can tell you it is possible to find the right postpartum exercise program for your own recovery and avoid the overwhelm and confusion of searching online.
At MUTU we believe that if you’re informed, you’re empowered, and we understand that there is no one-size-fits-all. So we have created the guide below to help you choose the right fit for you. We want you to be successful and happy in your journey to healing.
There are 3 big questions you will want answers to:
- Will it work for me?
- Will I actually do it?
- What if I have questions?
Will It Work For Me?
1. What’s the evidence?
In a time when anyone can have a platform, create a program, and call themselves an ‘expert’, evidence matters. You want to know that what you are investing in is safe, effective, and will work.
Many programs claim to be ‘medically recommended’ or clinically proven but are actually not.
To cut through the noise of all the programs and ‘experts’ out there, ask yourself this question: Where’s the medical proof and evidence that this will work for the issues I am dealing with? Many programs claim to be ‘medically recommended’ or clinically proven but don’t take those words at face value, dig into them. Find the proof:
- How many people were in the clinical study?
As you really start to look into claims of ‘medically recommended’ and ask the above questions, many of these claims will fall flat, be exaggerated, and some downright misleading. Do the research, it is worth it!
2. Who made it?
Let’s get more into those ‘experts’ we have already mentioned because most exercise programs have a face. A founder who actually created and curated the content. Qualifications and expertise are important, but make sure they’re relevant. If you want help with postpartum recovery, healing a diastasis recti or strengthening your pelvic floor, then a generic personal trainer is not enough. You will want a specific postpartum recovery specialist with certifications from respected sources, biomechanics expertise, and women’s health or pelvic health specialities in fitness and/or physical therapy.
Look at who is behind the postpartum exercise program you are considering. Dig into their credentials, their expertise, and their general vibe. Take note of the values that matter to you, examples could be: representation, inclusion, racial equality, and diversity. Does their brand consistently show the values they claim? The brands you support through monetary means and beyond is an important factor to consider.
3. Who recommends it?
A postpartum exercise program having ‘stamps of approval’ from fancy-sounding professionals looks good- It catches peoples attention, builds confidence, and can sway you to purchase.
‘Medical expertise’ is often respected and worthy opinion, but check it’s relevant. A Nurse, reflexologist or general Doctor is not necessarily an expert in the specific issues you want help with, like pelvic floor function, prolapse symptoms, painful sex or diastasis recti.
Look for endorsements from specialists in women’s health such as pelvic health PTs, Womens’ Health Physiotherapists, surgeons and plastic surgeons who specialize in abdominal and pelvic work, midwives and health professionals working with women’s postnatal physical and mental health issues. Essentially whoever is endorsing the program, should know their stuff. Like really know their stuff. So don’t be afraid to look up who is giving those stamps of approval.
4. Where can I see reviews?
Real people and their stories will always be the opinions we all trust the most. Did it work for them? Did they like it? Would they recommend it?
The internet leaves nowhere for brands to hide – read the reviews and testimonials- read the reviews and testimonials. Take note of what people say they love and what they didn’t- compare these pros and cons with other postpartum exercise programs you are considering. Decide what your ‘must-haves’ are in a program and look for these in the reviews you read. Do your homework on this, you will learn a lot!
Will I Actually Do It?
5. Have I got time for this?
You have enough to do already. You are not looking for another long program, regime or commitment. You’re looking for the most efficient, effective way to achieve your goals and feel better about yourself. Multiple repetitions, long workouts, strict dietary rules or inflexible schedules are not going to work for you. Make sure to compare daily time commitment and all other components of the postpartum exercise programs to see which one seems like one you can truly incorporate into your life.
6. Will I stick with it?
Nothing makes us stick at something like results.
If doing something makes you feel better, you’re more likely to keep going.
If something fits into your life without feeling like just another chore, you’re more likely to stick with it.
If you have somewhere to ask questions from an expert and get a personal response within 24 hours… you will feel supported, reassured and guided.
If you’ve got others to cheer you on and pick you up when you fall, you’ve got the best possible chance of making this the first and last ‘program’ you need to buy.
7. Will it be too hard?
When we try to follow a workout which feels un-relatable and unachievable, it’s hard to even start.
“I don’t look like her” / “ I’ll never look like her / I’m not fit enough for this”
(voices in our head that stop us from ever starting, and make us feel..
a bit crap.)
The postpartum exercise program you chose should be one that you can scale to fit your needs- there should be flexibility to adapt and modify and guidance on how to do this. You want the program you choose to start with the basics and foundation work then builds from there, only then can you truly gain momentum in your healing.
8. How long do I have access?
You can start with a 10 Free Trial, before moving to an annual membership (one time payment for 12 momnths access), or a monthly subscription. See MUTU payment plans here.
9. What support is there?
We’re all tired of the mom culture and message of “You aren’t good enough”
You aren’t spending enough time with the kids. You aren’t cooking enough homemade meals. You aren’t doing enough crafts and learning activities with the kids. You aren’t exercising enough. The list could go on, and on. No matter what we do, it’s wrong.
An online program shouldn’t be yet another thing you are failing at. It should be a supportive place. Somewhere you can go to celebrate your wins and be lifted up when you didn’t get to your workout because a toddler had a meltdown and it was all you could do to not lock yourself in the bathroom and cry (if you did lock yourself in the bathroom and cry, don’t worry, I did too. Twice last week.) You need to be supported in this journey, you should not have to do this alone.
What If I Have Questions?
10. Is there an expert to answer my questions?
We all have questions when we start something new. What if you feel symptoms aren’t improving or you need to make adaptations and progressions?
What if you need to be picked up and dusted off with no shame or judgement after-life just got in the way for a few days? If you need motivation, encouragement or cheering on? Is this move safe for pregnancy? How to modify that move for prolapse? Why does your body look, feel or respond in a certain way? How are others making it work?
These questions should be answered by an expert in that program. Make sure the program you end up going with gives you access to get all your questions answered, and answered well.
11. Will it make me feel better, or worse about myself?
Will it make me feel good about myself? Or will it just be yet another thing I’m failing at?
Fat-shaming and judgmental comments about lifestyle, eating or activity levels are likely to make us feel worse, not better. Language and fear-mongering referring to your body as ‘broken’ or in need of ‘getting back’, simply cause anxiety and fear.
Remember, you’re choosing a postpartum exercise program because you want to feel better, not worse!
Is the program inclusive of body type and ethnicity? Are the ‘before and after’ shots believable and diverse? Check out reviews and social media feeds to decide if the vibe is truly making you feel good about yourself, motivated and supported.
12. Now it’s Time to Find Your Right Fit
We have covered a lot of information! Remember if you’re informed, you’re empowered. With this detailed guide on how to become informed, you will no doubt be empowered to find your right fit when it comes to a postpartum exercise program!
Take your time, do the research, and no matter what we will be cheering for your healing, happiness, and success!