Or HIIT as you may think of it.
Every time a new mum eases themselves into exercise with a few HIIT sessions a pelvic floor fairy dies.
Well, that’s not true in terms of the pelvic floor fairy but damage can be done.
Post Natal and Plyometrics aren’t 2 things that go together, that is until you’ve built your body and pelvic floor back up to be able to withstand the impact. (The same goes for running, however that’s for another day).
Why is this?
Well, your “core” is like a cylinder that rises and falls with the breath, and with movement. The pelvic floor should be bouncy and be able to absorb impact like a trampoline, however post birth, having carried the weight of a growing baby and maybe even pushed one out, it’s a little weakened.
This means that when we land from a jump, there’s nothing to absorb that impact, hence leaking (this can also happen if you have a hypertonic/constantly contracted pelvic floor, usually found in ‘sporty’ females or anyone who finds them tensing their abs 24/7*).
”“Women that leak the most, contract their pelvic floor the most”, Smith et al, 2007.
Annoyingly, a lot of classes have plyometric exercises in as they get your heart rate up, and maybe because they look good on instagram?
So, to help guide you, I’ve created a list and a few demos of what you can swap them for (head over to my instagram post here to see the demos).
- Squat Jumps for squats or squats to toes: Either just focus on squatting or add “an almost jump” where you rise to your toes as if you were jumping without leaving the floor.
- High Knees for Mountain Climbers (this is once you’ve been training for a good few weeks and don’t have any pain/odd feelings): This is high intensity but without gravity so it’s a good way of testing the waters (or hopefully lack of).
- Burpees for burpee step outs: Every HIIT class instructor’s go to move, and every personal trainer’s most hated. Swap these for step outs and lose the jump. If you want to add a little more to these, add dumbbells so you’re deadlifting these off the ground as you rise to standing.
- Star Jumps: Step on leg out to the side and the other.
- Tuck Jumps: (does anyone even like these?!): Grab yourself a pair of dumbbells and opt for thrusters. Still gets that heart rate up!
- Box Jumps for Step Ups: And please STEP down, rather than jump. Start with a low box and build up as you may notice your legs and balance won’t cooperate if you’re early postnatal.