If you’re Instagram obsessed like myself, then you may have already stumbled across barrecore. The ballet/pilates inspired workout, has already developed some what of a cult following with celebrities frequently posting their mid workout selfies on the social media site. Integrating the fat burning formula of interval training with static stretches, barrecore creates a leaner and longer dancers physique with no bulking.
Excited to learn about the introduction of barreBUMP, a 30 minute, 1 to 1 modification class for the mum-to-be, I sat down with instructor Gemma Bass-William to discover how barrecore can guide you safely on your fitness journey from bump and beyond.
Hi Gemma, thanks for answering my question, could you explain the benefit barrecore during and after pregnancy? barrecore helps enable pre-natal and post-natal mums to ensure their body is the healthiest it can be before and after the baby arrives. Benefits include preparation for labour, learning breathing techniques, attention to posture and awareness of the mental and physical changes that are taking place. Exercising whilst pregnant also helps to educate the body ready for recovery after birth, in terms of reconnecting with the pelvic floor and abdominal region.
What is special about barrecore is that it’s a supportive environment where there is a real sense of community – you often find people hanging out before and after class, supporting one another with their body goals! All our instructors are super attentive and give plenty of pre and post natal modifications throughout the class. It’s a great place to be when your body is changing during pregnancy!
Should we limit our activity at a certain point during pregnancy, is there a point when we need to stop? Interestingly, I find a lot of women don’t exercise as much in the first 3 months due to sickness and dizziness, although that is not to say they can’t. Provided your physician is happy with you to do so, you can exercise right up until the birth but you need to ensure your regime has been modified to suit where you are at in your pregnancy.
Are there any exercise we should avoid when pregnant and post-natal?Any crunch/ flexion abdominal exercise and full planks as it puts to much pressure on the abdomen and can cause injuries, and no lying on your back for exercise after the first trimester. Also the best advice I would give to a pregnant woman is ‘If it doesn’t feel right, don’t do it’.
And any advice about exercising safely while pregnant? Hydrate! Most pregnant women don’t drink enough water which causes exhaustion, muscle cramps and low energy.
How can we start getting back into shape post birth? Take it easy, set up a routine for yourself even if it is just 1 hour a week to start with, always get approval from your doctor that you are healthy and approved for exercise. On average it takes between 6 to 12 weeks before you can return to an exercise class again.
If our stomach muscles split during pregnancy are there any exercises we can do to bring them back together? When you have a “split stomach”, also known as a diastasis Recti, you can heal it by doing the following:
- First, you have to learn to activate your transverse abdominal. This is your deepest layer of abdominals.
- You can do this by gently drawing in your belly button towards your spine. You don’t want it to feel forced or like you are sucking in your tummy and can’t breath. The pelvis and shoulders should stay still. You want to feel like you are drawing in your lower abdominals.
- You should also work on your pelvic floor muscles and transverse abdominis muscles to strengthen them, which will in return help you to draw back the rectus abdominis (six pack muscle) that has separated.
At barrecore we can work on this; there will be an instructor to help you activate your transverse abdominal.
Are there any other forms of exercise that you would recommend to complement my barrecore workouts? Pilates is hugely beneficial during and post pregnancy. Pilates allows you to maintain fitness and puts an emphasis on technique and precision.
What are the most effective & time efficient barrecore exercises a pregnant woman can do in the comfort of her own home? Plies, squats and light-weights for the arms are great exercises to do at home.
Great advice! And my final question, do you have any motivational fitness tips for the busy mum and mum-to-be? Try to move everyday whether that is walking in town or taking a barrecore class – find something you love and you will stick to it! Don’t give yourself a hard time if you can’t achieve your goals straight away, you will get there!