This blog is for all the pregnant mummas out there suffering from back soreness. I spoke to Madison Cutmore, Physiotherapist in Women’s Health, to get her top tips on thoracic pain in pregnancy and beyond.
She explained that, as our bodies undergo a lot of hormonal changes throughout pregnancy, these changes, compounded by many positional and activity changes, can leave your back stiff and sore as you accommodate your growing baby. This kind of back pain can often resolve postnatally however, a lot of the time women can experience ongoing, breastfeeding fuelled stiffness.
So, what can you do if you’re experiencing thoracic pain?
Backs don’t like being still. Thoracic pain is often caused by stiffness so the best thing you can do is keep moving. Avoid prolonged positioning and break up your day with regular short walks and full-body movements when possible.
This goes above general movement throughout the day and should involve a combination of cardiovascular and resistance training. Exercise during pregnancy has been proven to be good for your baby and good for both your mental and physical health. This is where FHIT comes in with workout videos for all levels of fitness, including Foundations which is extremely popular with expectant and postpartum mums.
The roller is a great way to increase thoracic extension and rotation as well as relieve muscle tightness and spasm throughout your back and shoulders. Some of her favourite exercises include Thread the Needle and gentle extension over the roller.
This is really important. Make sure you set yourself up well from the outset – designate a breastfeeding chair that is upright with good back support. A pillow under bub and a rolled-up towel behind your lower back can keep you from hunching forward and relieve the load on your upper back.