Pilates And Postpartum Depression

Pilates is often associated with building core strength and picture-perfect abs. However, Pilates was actually designed as a mind-body approach to physical fitness and overall health and wellbeing.


Postpartum depression is a serious illness that can occur in women shortly after delivery or following a miscarriage or stillbirth. It is often accompanied by feelings of sadness, hopelessness, and worthlessness, and it can prevent new moms from adequately caring for and bonding with their babies.


Not to be confused with the "baby blues," which usually go away within two weeks of delivery, the symptoms of postpartum depression can last for months. The "baby blues" can occur a few days after childbirth and are associated with lost sleep, irritability, mood swings, and crying. Hormonal changes and the stress of caring for a new baby are common causes for the "baby blues" and postpartum depression.


According to the Mayo Clinic, there are more than 3 million cases of postpartum depression in the U.S. each year. Women are more likely to develop postpartum depression if they have a history of depression, a poor support system, a sick baby or a lot of stress in their lives.


There is good news though. Postnatal Pilates is a great way to prevent and manage the "baby blues" and postpartum depression. The regular practice of Pilates relieves stress while improving the ability to center one's life and to find balance. An established Postnatal Pilates program also provides an additional support mechanism for new moms, allowing them to bond with a community of women who are experiencing the same joys and difficulties of life with a newborn. In fact, a recent study from the Journal of Clinical Nursing found that women who participated in a postnatal Pilates and Yoga program, once a week for 3 months, had a significant reduction in postpartum depression. Researchers found that the program improved the physical and mental health of new moms, enhancing their overall quality of life.


Epiphany Pilates offers a comprehensive Postnatal Pilates program that fosters a mind-body connection in new moms and provides a community of support. Each exercise presented in our Postnatal Pilates and Baby at the BarreTM classes are also specifically designed to reactivate the deep abdominal and pelvic floor muscles as these recover after delivery. To learn more about our Prenatal and Postnatal Program, visit www.epiphanypilates.com/prenatal-postnatal.

Eurona Tilley