3rd Trimester

Stretch, relax, and learn about your pelvic floor as you prepare for the big event!

Can't see your feet? That's normal. Space is limited these days. You might feel a little short of breath, pooping might be a pain and you may be peeing... a lot. Each of the trimesters requires different approaches to exercise and mindfulness—this one's for the final stretch.

Contributing practitioners:
3
Sections
11
Classes
Hang in there, baby!

Exercise Ball to De-Stress and Mobilize

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Learn the benefits of using an exercise ball during pregnancy and labor, as well as what exercises to do to accommodate baby and prepare for birth.

Equipment: large exercise ball

Disclaimer: People with SI joint pain (pain in the low back or butt) or pubic symphasis pain (pain in the pubic area) should not participate in the marching while seated on a ball exercise featured in this video.

Dr. Casie Danenhauer discusses the benefits of using a large exercise ball (aka swiss ball/birthing ball) during all phases of pregnancy, but especially as a supportive tool during the 3rd trimester and labor.  She notes the importance of maintaining good pelvic and spinal mobility, core stability, and posture which the ball can help with as the pregnant body expands and changes to accommodate for baby. Dr. Casie notes especially how using the tactile feedback of the ball can assist preparing the pelvic floor to soften and open for vaginal delivery.  She also gives a short description of proper fitting for size and how to safely use the ball.

The exercise sequence focuses on simple pelvic mobility activities, pelvic floor awareness, core stability work, and positions of comfort to be used in the changing pregnant body and in labor. Dr. Casie offers modifications for different stages of pregnancy and performs ~ 10 repetitions of each exercises, but encourages each pregnant person to find the number of reps that feels therapeutic to them (mobility should feel good!). The sequence can be performed daily.

Exercises on the ball include:

  • Pelvic floor and core awareness with breath
  • Pelvic Tilting: Forward/Back with pelvic floor awareness
  • Seated Cat/Cow
  • Pelvic Tilting: Right/Left
  • Pelvic Circles
  • Perineal softening into the ball
  • Pelvic Figure 8
  • Core Stability: Marching
  • Wide-leg thoracic rotation
  • Supported child's pose with ball

As always consult with your pelvic floor PT if you have questions regarding form or safety during these activities. Always takes exercise at your own pace and modify as needed.

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