Keep good posture during and after pregnancy

A good posture may help to reduce strain on your back during and after pregnancy. It may also help to improve abdominal muscle tone.

To maintain a good standing posture:

  1. Tuck your chin in.
  2. Keep your shoulders down and back.
  3. Tuck your stomach and bottom in by shortening the distance between your sternum (breastbone) and the perineum (the area between your vagina and anus).
  4. Distribute your weight evenly on both legs.
Correct posture   Incorrect posture with an arched low back
A pregnant woman with a good standing postuure - chin tucked in, shoulders down and back, stomach and bottom tucked in and weight distributed evenly on both legs.       A pregnant women stands in an incorrect posture with an arched low back .

See how to maintain a good standing posture

Toning abdominal muscles after giving birth

During pregnancy your body releases the hormones to soften your ligaments and abdominal muscles to allow for your growing baby.

This hormone is also responsible for a common condition during pregnancy called abdominal separation (abdominal diastasis), which is a larger than normal separation and opening of your abdominal muscles.

Practising good posture can help to improve abdominal tone.

Maintaining a good sitting posture

A woman holding a baby sits in a high backed chair. Her lower back is supported by a cushion and a pillow is underneath her arms to bring the baby closer for feedingBe sure to sit in a well-supported position and use a foot stool under your feet. Avoid sitting in bed if you have back pain.

It is also important to sit comfortably before feeding:

  1. Sit in a supportive and if possible, a high back chair. Make sure your back is supported against the backrest.
  2. Support your lower back with a cushion or rolled-up hand towel.
  3. Place a pillow under your baby to bring the baby closer to your breast or the bottle.
  4. Relax your shoulders.

Look down to ensure your baby attaches to the breast or bottle, then use this time to do gentle neck stretches and your pelvic floor exercises.

Learn more about physiotherapy during pregnancy

Button reads 'Find out more'