5 fun fitness ideas for mom and baby

5 fun fitness ideas for mom and baby


mom with baby and weights

Losing baby weight

Is there any family event quite as special as the arrival of a new baby? Whether your infant is the first, or the latest addition to your brood, this bundle of joy will have you smitten. But along with all that happiness, there also comes unwanted pregnancy pounds.
So how does a new mom lose the baby weight without leaving her precious infant behind? Thankfully, there are now several fitness activities that allow moms to bring baby along for the fun.


mom baby fitness hi-res

The benefits of postpartum exercise

Sandra Drygas, a certified trainer with Beaches Fitness in Toronto, specializes in pre- and postnatal well-being. A mom herself, Drygas understands the postpartum path back to fitness. “Exercise has so many benefits,” she says. “Moms come for the social aspects, because their babies sleep longer after a class, and to lose weight and tone up.” Working out also sparks the release of endorphins-feel-good brain chemicals that can help tackle the “baby blues.”

mom baby fitness pool

Swimming

Time in the pool encourages baby to explore her natural instincts for water, while mom enjoys a low-impact routine that’s kind to her healing body. “It’s stress-free on the joints, and can be a great cardio workout,” says Drygas. Some swimming programs accept infants as young as 12 weeks of age, while others prefer your child to be five to six months. Many YWCA locations across Canada offer mom and baby sessions, or try Fit4Two‘s AquaFit classes in B.C., Saskatchewan, and Manitoba. Swimming ticks all the boxes for a safe and effective workout, however, “Not all moms are comfortable getting back into a swimsuit right away, so it’s not for everyone,” says Drygas.


walking strollers

Strollercise

The easiest postpartum exercise, moms can stroll solo, or with a neighbourhood group. Raising your heart rate is key to a successful stroller-based workout. Some classes rely on jogging to achieve this goal, however in her own strollercise sessions, Drygas uses cardio bursts and wind sprints to achieve the same results. Plus, her methods don’t require fancy jogging strollers. “It all depends on the class that you sign up for,” says Drygas. And don’t worry about keeping baby occupied, she says, “It’s as easy as giving them a toy, or a snack.” Ready to roll? Type “strollercise” into Google and be spoilt for choice, or try Mommy and Baby Fitness if you live in Ontario, Alberta or Saskatchewan.
yoga mom baby

Yoga

Low-impact and great for overall health, yoga stretches help us stay calm and limber, and baby gets to indulge in her favourite sport-watching Mom! To guarantee a comfortable workout, Drygas suggests breastfeeding before class. It releases the pressure from your chest, and helps ensure that baby will be content through the session. Most yoga studios across Canada include mom and baby programs. Check your local paper, go online, or ask your friends for recommendations. “Word of mouth is really the best way,” says Drygas. “If you know someone who has taken a class and enjoyed it, it’s a safe bet it’s a good class.”

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