How Pilates can help new mums get safely back to running – post pregnancy

After having a baby all new mums will know that their stomach muscles have been stretched during pregnancy and lose their muscle strength.

For mums that were regular runners pre-pregnancy, the temptation can be to get back to running at the earliest opportunity, with the hope their strength and tone will regain quite quickly.

This is where I urge caution!

The deep stomach and back muscles, diaphragm and pelvic floor form what we call your ‘core’. They are the muscles that support your lower back and pelvic area.

As a Physiotherapist I regularly see new mums who have tried returning to running but develop back, hip or knee pain. This is often because they start running before they have regained their core muscle strength.

image sourced from

image sourced from


How Pilates can help you post pregnancy

Many of your leg muscles are attached to your pelvis. A strong core provides a firm platform for these muscles to work from. Without this firm core it is like trying to throw a ball accurately whilst standing on a floating platform! There’s no stability leading to injuries.

Pilates exercises target these all important deep postural muscles of your trunk.

Finding the right Pilates class – post pregnancy

Physio on the River

Post pregnancy when your body needs special care, we strongly recommend having a couple of private Pilates lessons first, before you join a class.

This allows you to get to grips with the exercises, understand your body, progress more quickly once you are in a small class setting and enjoy it!

The Pilates teacher will help you ‘find’ the muscles you are supposed to be working. She will tell you what you are supposed to do (hearing), demonstrate what you need to do (seeing) and may get you to put your hands on your abdominal muscles to get feedback (feeling).

The benefits of Pilates post-pregnancy

  • Get your tummy muscles back into their pre-baby state – or perhaps better!
  • Get back to sport safely
  • Prevent back pain and stress incontinence in the future
  • Regain great posture
  • Meet other new mums and share experiences

Why chose Physio on the River Pilates classes in Barnes?

Pilates classes are a popular form of exercise that can be found in various gyms and church halls.

At Physio on the River our whole ethos is around musculo-skeletal health and well-being. You are in a safe, light and airy, well-equipped environment, with highly trained instructors.

Clinic studio

The way our classes are run ensures you get personal attention:

  • Maximum 8 people in a class so there is plenty of close supervision. This is vital because the exercises are subtle and precise and it takes time to learn what muscles you are working.
  • The exercises are carefully graded so you progress through the different levels of difficulty without injuring yourself.
  • Where space allows we offer to help you make up any missed classes.
  • The classes are taught as a course so you are progressing all the time.
  • Our teachers are very experienced and well qualified so really know what they are doing.
  • We run our classes in terms like school terms so they are easy to fit around older children.
  • Some of our teachers are Physios as well so can help if you have an existing back problem or other injury.
  • We all know how hard it is to fit exercise in after a baby – but the classes are just an hour long and the exercises easy to practise at home in between times.

Many people give up on classes at the start because they find it hard to know what they should be doing. This rarely happens at Physio on the River because of the all-round caring environment you will experience and enjoy.

To book a Pilates class

Please call 020 8876 5690 and our Class Co-ordinator, Angela Ranger will be pleased to help you organise a private lesson and find the right class for you. Or you can click here to contact us.

Find out more about our small group Pilates Classes

Our articles on Pilates