Giving birth to a child is the best gift in itself. However, amidst all the bliss, dealing with physical, hormonal and emotional changes may require effort and understanding by the couple. The physical changes, mostly in form of postural alterations are inevitable and taking care of the same can aid in keeping aches
and pains at bay.
“Posture” is the position or the way in which we align or hold our body in standing, sitting, lying down or even during dynamic movements of lifting, pulling, pushing etc. Rounded
shoulders owing to increased breast size and exaggerated lower back curve are two of the most common postural changes leading to neck and back pain during prolonged standing. Following are the tips to maintain optimal posture during standing, sitting, lying and lifting objects during pregnancy. A list of Do’s and Don’ts to summarize.
Standing Posture during pregnancy :-
- Hold your head up straight with your chin in. Do not tilt your head forward, backward, down or sideways.
- Make sure your ear lobes are in line with the middle of your shoulders.
- Keep your shoulder blades back and your chest forward.
- Keep your belly and buttocks tucked in slightly. Do not hold the breath as you do the same.
- Point your feet in the same direction, with your weight balanced evenly on both feet.
- The arches of your feet should be supported with low-heeled (but not flat) shoes to prevent stress on your back.
Sitting posture during pregnancy :-
- Sit up with your back straight and your shoulders pulled back. Your buttocks should touch the back of your chair and lean slightly forward on chair.
- Sit with a back support (such as a small pillow, rolled-up towel ) at the curve of your back.
- Keep your hips and knees at a right angle (use a foot rest or stool if necessary). Your legs should not be crossed and your feet should be flat on the floor.
- At work, adjust your chair height and workstation so you can sit up close to your desk. Rest your elbows and arms on your chair or desk, keeping your shoulders relaxed.
- When standing up from the sitting position, move to the front of the seat of your chair. Stand up by straightening your legs. Avoid bending forward at your waist.
Sleeping & lying down during pregnancy :-
- Lying on back for more than 5 mins after 1st trimester is not advised as baby’s head in this position causes more stress on mom’s heart and may lead to low BP.
- Lie on left side lying with both knees bend and pillow between knees and below neck maintaining curve of back.
- Select a firm mattress or a soft one as per routine comfort.
- When standing up from the lying position, turn on to your side, draw up both knees and swing your legs to the bed’s side. Sit up by pushing yourself up with your hands. Avoid bending forward at your waist.
Lifting objects during pregnancy :-
- Before you lift an object, make sure you have firm footing.
- To pick up an object that is lower than the level of your waist, keep your back straight and bend at your knees and hips and . Do not bend forward at the waist with your knees straight.
- Stand with a wide stance close to the object you are trying to pick up and keep your feet firm on the ground and the object closer to body.
- Use caution when lifting heavy objects above waist level.
Here are few Do’s and Don’ts that will help you improve your posture during pregnancy and keep your body happy.
✔ Take frequent breaks every few hours and keep changing positions
✔Practice relaxation and stretches during pregnancy to stay comfortable
✔Follow guidelines given on maintaining correct posture during pregnancy
- Avoid prolonged standing and sitting in same position
- Avoid crossing leg while sitting
- Minimize heavy weight lifting or carrying
- Avoid bending from waist and twisting body while lifting
- Avoid wearing high heels to prevent back pain
✥Visit us online or at our centers for further information on classes and guidelines for a healthy and comfortable pregnancy.
Dr Mansi Jani [PT]
Fitness Expert & Trainer ,
Mammamia a mom’s world
Fortis Hospital Vashi