Exercising together with your baby instead of trying to squeeze it in while the baby is taking a nap is a great use of the time together. A great way to do something for yourself while at the same time having fun with your baby.You get more energy and start your journey towards getting your post pregnancy body under control. Your baby gets activated, stimulated and will have some fun.
If you want to exercise at home or attend a class, it is by far easiest to begin before your baby starts moving around. After that, you might not even be allowed to join some mom and baby exercise classes – for understandable reasons. If you have 10 babies crawling all over the floor, it is not easy to do any workout at all.
So don’t wait for too long. But also don’t start too early. First, rest and get used to actually having a baby in your arms. Then you can start, slowly.
Below you’ll find some exercise tips and things you can do with your baby. It does not have to be fancy or complicated!
Tips for Mom and Baby Exercise
Take a walk
This is, of course, the easiest way to get some exercise. You can start more or less from the day you give birth, although you’ll have to take it very slowly in the beginning. Either carry your infant in a sling or baby carrier or use his or her stroller.
In some cities, you can find new mom walking groups. A fun way to meet other moms!
If you walk in a park, or at least under some trees, your baby will have some fun too, looking at the swaying leaves. With older babies, go somewhere where there are a lot of people to look at and a lot of variation.
When your baby is 6 months old or so, you can put him in a jogging stroller and hit the trail. Many babies find it extremely exciting to go fast.
Just make sure you fix the front wheel of the stroller if you will be jogging somewhere where the road in rough. Otherwise, the stroller might turn over. For tips on buying the right stroller, click here.
This jogging stroller, at Amazon, is GREAT value if you need one in addition to your regular stroller.
Riding a bike
When your baby is around nine months old, and sits steadily, you can put him/her in a bicycle child seat, like this one at Amazon and take him for a ride. The seat in the link is super high quality and can be tilted up to 20 degrees, which is very convenient, almost necessary, for babies that easily fall asleep. Trust me, I’ve tried keeping my baby in a seat that couldn’t be tilted. He fell forward and had to walk all the way home and try to push him back into the seat while walking the bike. It was crazy!
Don’t forget to put on a helmet of the right size (One for you and one for your baby!)
And practice together with someone else on putting your baby in the bicycle seat and get going the first few times. It can be pretty scary to place a wriggling baby in the seat and try to get up on your bike until you know how to do it.
This is my favorite! I love yoga and doing yoga together with a baby can be a lot of fun. In most forms of yoga, you tend to go down on the floor from standing up quite a bit. If you do this, bending over your baby, he/she is likely to think that it is great fun.
Join a mom and baby yoga class or exercise at home to a yoga exercise video or online class. Or do both!
However, finding a good mom and baby yoga video or online class is not that easy. A great online class to check out is this one!. Good value and it specifically targets new moms.
Another mom and baby exercise possibility is pilates. Pilates is gentle but still very effective to improve the strength of for example your back and abdominal area.
If you haven’t tried pilates, consider buying a video or attending a class.
A popular DVD is Belly Beautiful Workout Pre and Postnatal Pilates Barre Fusion.
While maybe not so exciting, plain vanilla workout, like sit ups are a great way to get your body back. You can use your baby to get some extra resistance, for example, put your baby on your stomach while doing sit ups. Lift your baby to exercise your biceps and so on.
For some guidance, check out the excellent down-to-earth video below. There really are no excuse not getting up and getting started!
In many cities, you’ll find workout classes where you can bring your baby, at least until he or she learns how to crawl.
I wouldn’t exactly call this mom and baby exercise – more mom exercise, but if your baby enjoys watching you, for example from his or baby bouncer, then why not?
Getting back in shape after giving birth doesn’t have to be impossible. But allow it to take time! Doing mom and baby exercises is an excellent way to do something for both yourself and your baby. If you want a kickstart – sign up for our 7 days email mini-course for a fun way to get off the couch!