Your pelvis is the area that stretches from your pubic bone to the front of your body, and to the end of your spine at the back. It is basically a broad sling of muscles, ligaments and tissues that is very flexible, as it stretches when something presses down on it and bounces back up once the pressure has been removed. However, pregnancy puts weight on your pelvic floor for a long time, resulting in overstretching of the tissues and muscles there, weakening them consequently.
Your pelvis is actually that part of your body that holds and cradles your baby during pregnancy. It is surrounded by soft tissue that create a warm, comfortable nest-like home for your baby, and is designed to carry the weight of both the mother and her child. The pelvis is made up of four main bones that give it structure- one on each side that meet in the front, and two in the back called sacrum and coccyx.
During pregnancy, some women experience pelvic pain or discomfort because the hormones cause the ligaments there to stretch and soften, causing some separation or loosening of the joints. This allows the baby’s head to pass through easily during the time of birth. Also, due to the straining of the sacroiliac joint during pregnancy, some women might have lower back ache. Several pelvic exercises and tips exist, both for a mother-to-be and a new mom, to ease the whole process of pregnancy and childbirth.
Childbirth can leave your pelvic muscles bruised, swollen and sore, even if you choose not to go for vaginal birth. The muscles that connect your pelvic floor also tend to stretch out, numbing the area between your vagina and perineum. This makes it difficult for you to work on your muscles when you want to strengthen them.
If you have had a big baby, a severe tear, a forceps birth, or if your baby takes time to come out, chances are that you might have a stretched pelvic floor. Having said that, your body needs time to heal after giving birth and starting to exercise too soon can be counterproductive, causing you a great deal of discomfort. So, wait for a few days before hitting the mat for your exercises.
You should always consult your doctor and take advice from friends and relatives who have done these exercises after giving birth. Also, everybody’s experience is different, and therefore unique and very personal. You should give your body the time it requires and not overwork yourself in matters that can potentially end up having lifelong consequences.