It is no secret that being a mom can take a toll on your body that does not end when pregnancy or even postpartum ends. Carrying around a newborn or toddler can make for sore shoulders. Breastfeeding also forces your body to contort into new positions for extended periods of time. Lugging around heavy kids and diaper bags is not easy either. By the end of the day, no matter what stage of motherhood you are in, your body may be aching. Here are different stretches for mom and yoga poses that can help your body recover faster and feel better from all the new activity.
Stretches for Moms to Relieve Tension and Soreness
Constantly bending to pick up your child out of a crib unevenly compresses your spinal disks. If you do not address these issues, you could end up having long-term back problems. Doing the cat-camel stretch helps to maintain flexibility in your back, which will help this problem. This stretch is similar to cat/cow in yoga as you start on all fours.
Position your neck in line with your spine and tighten your abs to round your back. Make sure to tuck in your pelvis. Hold it for five seconds and then go back to starting position and continue to let your back sag toward the floor and lift your head and chest. Hold this position for five seconds. Repeat as desired.
Hip Flexor Lunges
Chasing after your toddler can be damaging to your lower back and hips. It can contribute to tight hip flexors. Hip flexor lunges can help.
Get into a lunge position with your back knee on the floor and press your hips forward until you feel a stretch in the front of that thigh. Hold for 30 seconds and repeat on the other side.
Along with these tight hip flexors, you could also develop lower back pain. A shoulder bridge stretch can be a great way to help alleviate this pain.
Lay on the floor with bent knees and your feet on the floor. Curl your back to lift it off the floor and hold for five seconds.
Whether it is giving a bath, leaning down to talk to a toddler, picking up toys, or changing a baby’s diaper, moms are hunching over a lot throughout the day. Unfortunately, this position can create problems over time by causing a muscular imbalance. Elbow curls can help stretch these tight upper back muscles.
Sit in a chair with your hands behind your head. Flare out your elbows to the side and then slowly press them forward in front of your face. Squeeze your shoulder blades, pull your elbows back and return to the starting position.
Stretch for stiff shoulders
This hunched position can also cause shoulder pain, which can filter into your back and neck too.
Sit in a backless chair with your feet flat on the floor. Put your left arm behind your waist and grasp your left wrist with your right hand. Pull your left hand to the right gently while looking over your left shoulder. Squeeze your shoulder blades and hold for 30 seconds. Repeat with the other arm.
Stress Relieving Yoga Poses
Thread the Needle
Thread the Needle pose is great for opening the shoulders and stretching the spine. It also acts to stretch the upper back.
You start in tabletop position, extend one arm toward the ceiling and look toward your hand. Then, move that arm under your chest and allow that shoulder to rest on the mat. Next, extend the other arm and hold. Repeat on the other side.
Cobra acts to strengthen your back and prevent pain.
You lie on the floor with your forehead resting on it. Place your hands on the floor at about mid-ribcage. Lift your chest and head with your shoulder blades down and back. Hold for five seconds.
This position is designed to treat knee pain, but it also stretches and strengthens your leg muscles.
Place your hands against a wall at shoulder height. Touch the wall with the toes of one foot while slightly bending your elbows. Take the other foot a few feet behind your body and bend your knee toward the floor. Hold this for 10 to 15 seconds. Switch sides.
Butterfly helps to relieve a stiff back and hips.
Sit with the soles of your feet together and your legs forming a diamond. Drop the weight of your legs.
Rear Arm Lift
This position is great for improving flexibility and soothe shoulder pain.
Stand with feet hip-width apart and a strap in one hand. Put both arms behind your back and grab the strap with the other hand also. Pull in your shoulders and move your hands toward each other to open up your chest.
This pose helps increase shoulder mobility and relieve elbow and shoulder pain.
Face the wall with feet hip-width or less. Extend your arms and place palms against the wall. Then move forward and lean your body weight onto the wall. Bend your elbows slowly, touch your nose to the wall before pushing back.
Extended Child’s Pose
The extended child’s pose is a great stretch to relieve lower back and neck pain. In addition, it stretches your hips, thighs, and ankles.
From a kneeling position, extend your knees to the edges of your mat while keeping your toes together. Then, sink back into your hips while stretching your arms out in front as you lower your face toward the mat. Hold for 30 seconds.
By making sure to stretch out your body, you can help alleviate many aches and pains associated with being a mom. These stretches for mom are a great start to reset your body and can be done in different combinations to address how you feel that day.