Watch Your Back
Breastfeeding is all about posture. If you can get comfortably situated in a cozy rocking chair with a big glass of water nearby, you can nurse all day. If you’re not comfortable, however, you won’t enjoy the experience. These exercises stretch your pregnant back and strengthen it for breastfeeding.
- Stand upright with your feet hip-width apart.
- Extend your arms above your head.
- Slowly stretch your upper body as you reach up and forward.
- Move your arms gently from side to side.
- Next, tighten the muscles in your buttocks as you lower your arms
- Place your palms against the small of your back with your fingers pointing downward.
- Exhale as you arch backward. Look up at the ceiling if you can.
- Hold for 5 seconds.
- Come up gradually while keeping your back straight.
- Stand with your feet hip-width apart, knees slightly bent.
- Place your hands on your waist.
- Gently twist your upper torso from side to side.
- Exhale as you rotate away from your center.
- Inhale on your return.
Visualizing Breastfeeding Success
Visualization is just a fancy word for something we do all the time. We are always making mental pictures of what’s to come. To visualize, you do not have to create an actual mental picture, but an impression or feeling. Try this simple visualization:
Sit upright in a chair, on a cushion or in your bed. Chose your eyes.
Breathe gently for a few minutes until you feel relaxed. Imagine yourself sitting in a rocking chair holding and breastfeeding your baby. Hear the contented coos of the baby. Notice the gentle sighs of your breathing. See the soft smiles on each of your faces. Just enjoy the scene for a few minutes as you rock back and forth and breathe deeply.
If other thoughts intrude, gently bring your attention back to your visualization.
To end, bring your attention back to your own breathing and then to the room. Slowly open your eyes.
About Peggy O’Mara. I am an independent journalist who edits and publishes peggyomara.com. I was the editor and publisher of Mothering Magazine for over 30 years and founded Mothering.com in 1995. My books include Having a Baby Naturally, Natural Family Living, The Way Back Homeand A Quiet Place. I have conducted workshops at Omega Institute, Esalen, La Leche League, and Bioneers. I am the mother of four and grandmother of three. Please check out my email newsletter with free tips on parenting, activism, and healthy living.