Hallie has a BS in Wellness and Fitness Program Management from Arkansas Tech University. She went on to receive her Doctor of Physical Therapy Degree from Southwest Baptist University in Bolivar, MO. Hallie found her path to physical therapy and personal training through logging many hours in physical therapy herself as a high school and college athlete. Hallie has 7 years of experience working with a variety of orthopedic and women’s health conditions. Since having two kids of her own she has realized the positive impact her profession has on women pre and post baby. When she is not working, Hallie enjoys downtime with her family, running, and spending time with friends.
Ingrid Hanna is a licensed physical therapist, personal trainer, and mom of two. She earned her BS in biology from the College Of Charleston in South Carolina and a Masters degree in Physical Therapy from Grand Valley State University in Grand Rapids, Michigan. She is certified as a Strength and Conditioning Specialist by the National Strength and Conditioning Association and is certified by the American Board of Physical Therapy Specialists as an Orthopedic Specialist. She is currently working on her pelvic floor physical therapy certification and recently earned a certificate of achievement in pregnancy and postpartum physical therapy by the Academy of Pelvic Health Physical Therapy. She has been practicing physical therapy for over 15 years and spent 10 years as an aerobics instructor and franchisee. She has had a hand in rehab and fitness program development for most of her career. She loves traveling with her family, gardening, and playing outdoors with her kids.
The answer to this question will be different for each person. Mastery of an exercise may take performing it four times or more than twenty. The important things to be aware of are: 1. Are you performing the exercise correctly by listening to and successfully following the cues on the video and 2. Are you able to complete the number of repetitions or recommended time without fatiguing or losing proper form. You should only “master” an exercise if you can answer yes to these two questions. We recommend that you go at your own pace, listen carefully to the verbal cueing in the videos, and answer assessment and mastery questions accurately to maximize the effectiveness of your program.
You will need exercise bands, handheld weights (light and moderate weight), a foam roller, timer, and exercise mat. A stability ball is featured in a few of the exercises but is optional. You can find links to all of our favorite gear below.
First off, congratulations! Your body needs a few days to adjust to the amazing (and slightly traumatic) experience it has just endured, but you’ll be ready to begin the program as early as 7 days. If you’ve had a c-section, we advise that you discuss any restrictions you may have with your doctor prior to beginning the program.
Of course we always recommend that you check with your doctor first but if you’ve been given the green light to continue exercising through your pregnancy, then the Back After Baby program is a great option. We recommend that you avoid exercises on your back or stomach once you have finished your second trimester, or before if you have any dizziness, light headedness, nausea, or discomfort in those positions.
There are many variables that affect how long it takes to get through the program, including prenatal fitness level and the amount of time you dedicate to the program. It’s important that you go at your own pace and make sure that you are honest with yourself (and your computer) when it’s time to assess. The average time it takes to complete the program is about 12 weeks. This gives your body time for tissue healing, re-education, lengthening, and rebuilding. For those who plan on taking an intensive approach, we recommend dedicating at least 6 weeks to complete the program.
We’ve found that pregnancy can lead to muscle imbalances and movement impairments that can remain for years, even after the body has recovered. This leads to wear and tear on the joints and soft tissue over time and eventually injury. The good news is, it’s never too late to address these limitations! In addition to the guided workouts, the body mechanics training and positioning strategies that Back After Baby provides will be necessary for your success as the habits you’ve probably formed over the years are well established. As muscle recruitment, strength, and flexibility begin to improve, you’ll be amazed at how much easier you move and how much better you feel!
Definitely! Regardless of whether you’ve had children, we all need to engage and strengthen our core, improve flexibility, work on overall muscle strength and endurance, and incorporate good body mechanics and postural habits into our daily activities. This helps us stay fit, avoid injury, and be productive in our daily lives.
Although this program is designed to retrain the pelvic floor and other core muscles which can help with urinary incontinence, we will be the first to admit that it may not be appropriate for everyone right away. If you are unable to achieve even a trace contraction of the pelvic floor muscles or if you’ve lost your ability to feel when you’re contracting your pelvic floor, then we recommend you consult with your doctor first. You may need a referral to a physical therapist or other specialist. Once you have been cleared to start exercising and are able to obtain a muscle contraction independently, you may begin the program.
Yes, Back After Baby is designed to activate your core muscles, address poor postural habits, improve body mechanics, and increase strength and flexibility for decreased stress on the spine and soft tissues and less pain with daily activities. We recommend you consult with your doctor prior to starting the program if you have pre-existing back pain to rule out any other causes. If your pain does not improve within 4 weeks of starting the program, we advise you follow up with your doctor for further evaluation.
Yes. Back After Baby incorporates exercises to help with neuromuscular recruitment and strengthening of the Transversus Abdominis muscle which acts like a corset to help support the abdominal wall and spine. As this muscle gets stronger and the abdominal fascia heals, your separation should lessen. You may need to modify exercises at first, depending on the severity of your diastasis recti. We recommend you avoid quadruped or forward plank positions and exercises on your back that involve rolling your head off the floor (crunches, roll ups, etc.). In general, you should avoid any activities which cause your stomach to bulge. You may perform manual bracing with exercises for additional support, if needed.