Because I have had the pleasure/honour of training more than a dozen incredible women through two dozen or so pregnancies, I am often asked “What do I do with my client who is or is planning to get pregnant?!”
More often than not, a trainer’s first reaction is “Wow, Congratulations!!!”. Then, “Don’t worry, I have it all under control!”, which when translated means “S…t, Google what do I do now??”
The most overlooked question that a trainer should ask them self is, “Does she have control of her pelvic floor muscles?”
I recently went on vacation and left Stacie M.(9 months pregnant), to train with another coach without leaving training instructions, as I took for granted that this was an easy case – my bad!
Since I was away in Jamaica and could not be reached, the Coach turned to other coaches for advice. All the responses were: “My client was able to do this and that…If your client is strong she could do this”. Someone even suggested Pull-Ups?!
20 coaches weighed in and gave advice without even knowing at what stage she was in her pregnancy; and more importantly, not one person asked “Does she have control of her pelvic floor muscles?”
Back to Stacie M.
When she told me over a year ago that she was planning on a third child, I referred her to an Osteopath to check the integrity of the abdominal area; I refer all my clients planning pregnancies to an Osteo. She came back and told me he had the same advice as I but was much more assertive, and used word like “prolapse” and “poor bladder control” should she not improve the functionality of her pelvic floor!
Yup, that scared the hell out of her. So guess what?? “Don, I NEED HELP!!”
The first 15-20 minutes of her workouts, we worked on properly activating her pelvic floor. Then, holding that contraction and also bracing the Transverse Abdominals…then, Pelvic Floor and Transverse Abdominals AND BREATHE!!! In conjunction with our 3 workouts per week, I referred her to a Pelvic Floor Physiotherapist to also work on re-establishing proper function.
Prior to our ‘intervention’, Stacie M. had plateaued at 90lbs. goblet squats and 150lbs. deadlift. Four pelvic floor physio sessions and one month of pelvic floor homework had Stacie blasting through her plateau – now front squatting 150lbs. and deadlifting 200lbs.
And then it happened… I I … PREGNANT!!!
She carried full term, 42 weeks…training 3x per week and baby Nicole was born 2lbs bigger than her two sisters!!!
In Part 2, I will explain how we got Stacie M. better/stronger than she’s ever been and how she trained up to a week before giving birth…
…until then, Welcome Baby Nicole to the CoreXcellence Family!!!