Returning to Running After Childbirth Delivery

Returning to Running After Childbirth Delivery

Posted on January 30th, 2024

When I see new postpartum mothers, I often get asked the question, is it ok to start running again?  

Granted, not everyone wants to start or return to running after delivery but those that do should be well-informed on when it is appropriate to begin running again.

In order to answer that question, it is important that the individual wishing to return to running be examined physically and appropriately in order to determine a number of things.

Some of the more important things to test would be:

- Strength of the abdominal wall, hips, back and pelvic floor.  

It is critical to check these areas in standing and functional positions related to running.

- Vaginal laxity and pelvic organ prolapse.

Often after delivery muscles and ligaments of the female pelvis can be weakened and compromised in their ability to provide stability. 

- Incontinence. 

It is not uncommon for women to experience urinary incontinence during and even after delivery. This is usually another sign of pelvic weakness. 

- Pelvic, vaginal, back or hip pain.

Childbirth can contribute to strain on these particular areas leading to pain with movement and strain. 

Running is an activity that places great demand on the body. With each stride, impact from you body hits and ground and is in turn transmitted back up the lower limbs to the pelvis and spine.  

If muscle weakness, joint and pelvic organ instability is present, the body cannot ideally absorb and transmit these high-impact forces. This may potentially lead to further injury, pain and instability.  

It can take 3 to 6 months post delivery to be fully ready to return to running as an exercise or sport in a safe, logical progression of exercise and activities that will prepare, train and challenge the body for the high demands of running.

At Lotus Physical Therapy for Women, PLLC, I make sure every new mom who would like to return to running (or whatever activity she chooses) is thoroughly evaluated and trained to meet the demands of that activity.

If you would like a postpartum evaluation to determine what exercises and activities are appropriate for your individual needs, call 845-517-5100 to schedule your appointment today.  

I look forward to working with you. 

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