The Baby Show has revealed that new mums are feeling depressed about their post-baby bodies and pressured to get back into shape. In a survey of 1,000 new mums, one in five (20%) say they hate their post-baby body while just 12% thought it was amazing. A whopping 79% of new mums don’t like their body as much as they did before they fell pregnant, with more than half (52%) saying they feel pressured to get back into shape after having a baby.
The biggest pressure, however, came from the mums themselves with 50% of mums saying that they put the most pressure on themselves. Meanwhile, a huge 92% of new mums believe that the media and representation of celebrity mums set unrealistic expectations on mothers to get back to their pre-pregnancy body too soon after birth.
Charlie Launder, pre and post-natal fitness expert and speaker at The Baby Show says: “It is such a shame that so many mums dislike their post-baby bodies. I think that social media does have a part to play in this, not for everyone, but it is a platform that provides immediate access for comparison at a time when a woman’s body is changing beyond their control.
“A surge in hormones in a new mum can be very tough on themselves anyway and then seeing other mums looking like they’ve got it all sorted can be hard. We all just need to remember that Instagram is just a snapshot, often the best part of the day or week, and everyone has their own insecurities and struggles. It is worth noting that Instagram is also an incredible hub of support and education for new parents and is great for showing mums what is safe for them to do when getting back into exercise.
“I think that women are put under a lot of pressure, but often by no one other than themselves. We have no idea how our body is going to react to pregnancy and birth, so these expectations we put on ourselves are plucked completely out of thin air and often very unrealistic. In reality, those that matter to you most don't care what you look like, they think you're beautiful and amazing.”
When it comes to exercising, 85% of new mums said that it has helped their mental health after having a baby. The most popular form of exercise amongst new mums is walking with their baby (51%), followed by swimming (13%) and yoga or Pilates (11%).
Charlie adds: “Having a baby changes your whole world, mostly for the better but change is always daunting. Exercising again can give you that feeling of taking back some control and ownership of your body again. It is a small part of the day that is focused on you and only you (even if your baby is with you!) and this is so important to make time for. It is often a time to meet up with another adult, be it a personal trainer or a friend who you can talk to about non-baby related things which can really help. There are a huge number of mental benefits of exercise, but this doesn't have to mean going to the gym; it can just as easily be a walk in the park or some time for yoga - anything that gets the blood pumping a little bit and those endorphins into your system!”
Many new and expectant mums don’t know where to start when it comes to exercising – both during pregnancy and once their baby has arrived. To help new mums model, influencer and presenter, Georgia Jones will be on stage at The Baby Show, with MadeForMums on Saturday 20th October alongside personal trainer, Charlie Launder from Bumps & Burpees, to discuss how she coped and give parents realistic goals and expectations.The Baby Show, with MadeForMums, is the must-attend event for new and expectant parents looking for all the essential products and ideas on what they need as they make their first steps into parenthood. Returning to Olympia London from Friday 19th until Sunday 21st October, the show gives parents the opportunity to compare, try and buy – all under one roof.
As well as Georgia and Charlie, there will be an exciting line-up of speakers taking to the stage across the three days, giving advice on sleep, birth, breastfeeding, weaning, health and wellbeing as well as celebrities sharing their experiences. Experts confirmed include Lucy Shrimpton, The Sleep Nanny®, Madeleine Shaw, nutritional therapist and bestselling cookery writer, Lesley Gilchrist, midwife and birth trauma expert, Anna Williamson, TV presenter and life coach, Dr Robert Titzer, infant learning expert, Vanessa Christie, breastfeeding expert and lactation consultant, Andrea Grace, sleep expert, Clare Byam-Cook, breastfeeding expert to the stars and Milli Hill, birth guru and author of The Positive Birth Book.
If you’re looking for more confidential advice, experts will be on hand throughout the Show to answer your pregnancy and parenting questions in the private, One-to-One with the Experts area, sponsored by My Expert Midwife. The British Red Cross will also be running their hugely popular, regular half-hour workshops where visitors can learn essential life-saving first aid skills on what to do for your baby in an emergency. Free of charge, you can just turn up, register and enjoy. The NCT will also be on hand to provide 45-minute Antenatal and Postnatal classes, jam-packed with information and advice on everything from essential baby care to colic and crying. Ticket packages are pre-bookable in advance for the NCT classes via www.thebabyshow.co.uk.
The Baby Show, the UK’s leading pregnancy and parenting event, runs from three days – Friday 19th – Sunday 21st October and is open from 10 am until 5.30pm each day.
The advance ticket price is £14.70pp* on Friday and £15.70pp* for either the Saturday or Sunday, saving over 25% of the on-the-door ticket value. On-the-door tickets cost £20pp. To purchase tickets and for more information visit www.thebabyshow.co.uk.
Olympia London, Olympia Way, London, W14 8UX.
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