What's best for the baby? The answer to this most commonly asked question will shock you!
Every mother to be asks herself these questions and a quick google of the phrase reveals no surprises, with the most popular searches being:
best age to have a baby biologically
best foods for baby brain development
best age to have a baby
how to improve baby brain development during pregnancy
best age to have a baby for a woman
baby brain development food during pregnancy
how to increase I.Q. of baby during pregnancy
Articles discussing the essentials of what you need, occupy the many pages of Google results with everything from medicines to diapers and furniture. Yet the single MOST important factor that will influence the baby's well-being is most often ignored.
Mum, what’s MOST important for the health of your baby? Can you number these in order of priority?
Watch where you go; avoid crowds like shopping centers and restaurants
Wash your hands and ask anyone who’s going to hold your newborn to wash their hands ﬁrst to prevent the spread of cold, ﬂu and other viruses
Don’t stop breastfeeding
Teach your older child and (any pets, e.g. never leave child alone with dog or cat) what to do
Let your baby get used to noise. The womb is loud, and newborns are used to the noise
Learn to soothe your wailing newborn
Help get your baby to latch on
Keeping your baby awake during feedings
Help your Baby Bond with Dad / Partner
Regular checkups with the health provider
Respond to your baby; when your baby is sick, hungry, upset, or just needs some comfort. Babies reach out for you in countless ways: babbling, making sounds, or smiling. When you respond in a loving and consistent way, you help your baby’s brain develop.
Provide a safe and loving home for your baby. Develop daily routines that your baby can count on. Keep your home calm.
Help your baby explore his surroundings, both inside and out. Play helps babies learn, and you are your child’s ﬁrst playmate. Playing simple games will help them learn about the people and the world around them. Remember to talk to your baby as you go through your daily routines. Tell your baby what is going on, point out interesting things that you see together, and help them develop their other senses—hearing, touch, taste and smell.
Make sure you are in the best possible physical and mental health
If you have numbered the last point as No.1 then you are correct! The fact is you have to do all of those things above, they are all important. However, looking after yourself should be priority Number 1.
You are your baby’s most important asset! Caring for yourself is as important as caring for your baby.
Regardless of how ‘equal’ we now are in sharing our domestic, financial and parenting responsibilities, the mother remains the cornerstone of the family. You get sick and your whole family is in trouble.
Supported by the latest evidence some of the most important learning happens while we're still in the womb. Some of the amazing things that scientists are discovering about what foetuses learn while they're still in their mothers' bellies1:
They learn the sound of their mothers' voices.
Babies cry in the accent of their mother's native language. French babies cry on a rising note while German babies end on a falling note, imitating the melodic contours of those languages. Now why would this kind of foetal learning be useful? It may have evolved to aid the baby's survival. From the moment of birth, the baby responds most to the voice of the person who is most likely to care for it -- its mother. It even makes its cries sound like the mother's language, which may further endear the baby to the mother, and which may give the baby a head start in the critical task of learning how to understand and speak its native language.
By 7 months of gestation, the foetus' taste buds are fully developed, and its olfactory receptors, which allow it to smell, are functioning. The flavours of the food a pregnant woman eats find their way into the amniotic fluid, which is continuously swallowed by the foetus. Babies seem to remember and prefer these tastes once they're out in the world. A good reason not to be a fussy eater yourself ?
“Much of what a pregnant woman encounters in her daily life -- the air she breathes, the food and drink she consumes, the chemicals she's exposed to, even the emotions she feels -- are shared in some fashion with her foetus. They make up a mix of influences as individual and idiosyncratic as the woman herself. The foetus incorporates these offerings into its own body, makes them part of its flesh and blood. So what a foetus is learning about in utero is not appreciation of Mozart but answers to questions more critical to survival. Will it be born into a world of abundance or scarcity? Will it be safe and protected, or will it face constant dangers and threats? The pregnant woman's diet and stress level in particular provide important clues to prevailing conditions. The resulting tuning and tweaking of a foetus' brain and other organs are part of what give us humans our enormous flexibility, our ability to thrive in a huge variety of environments, from the country to the city, from the tundra to the desert. It seems that foetuses are taking cues from the intrauterine environment and tailoring their physiology accordingly. They're preparing themselves for the kind of world they will encounter on the other side of the womb. The foetus adjusts its metabolism and other physiological processes in anticipation of the environment that awaits it. And the basis of the foetus' prediction is what its mother eats. The meals a pregnant woman consumes constitute a kind of story, a fairy tale of abundance or a grim chronicle of deprivation. This story imparts information that the foetus uses to organize its body and its systems -- an adaptation to prevailing circumstances that facilitates its future survival.
Foetal Origins Research is not about blaming women for what happens during pregnancy. It's about discovering how best to promote the health and well-being of the next generation. That important effort must include a focus on what foetuses learn during the nine months they spend in the womb. Learning is one of life's most essential activities, and it begins much earlier than we ever imagined.
So what’s best for YOU, is by default best for baby. There are so many references online, so to save you some time we have compiled a list of those good things in chronological order.
LOOKING AFTER YOU
WHERE TO GET
The fitter you are before getting pregnant and the fitter you stay through your pregnancy, the faster you are likely to recover. Here are two great articles on “getting fit for pregnancy”, and starting your journey on the right foot:
Do not stress if you are already pregnant - it’s not too late to start. Today many women make it a priority to start looking after themselves as they get pregnant. Just make sure you consult your health care professional for a suitably gentle routine. Here’s an article that looks at exercises during pregnancy regardless of your level of fitness.
Fit Pregnancy Nutrition A healthy diet is an important part of a healthy lifestyle at any time, but especially vital if you’re pregnant or planning a pregnancy. Healthy eating keeps you feeling good and gives your baby the essential nutrients they need in the womb.
The latest research shows that you DO NOT NEED TO EAT FOR 2. During the first trimester, a woman’s energy (kilojoule, kJ) intake should remain about the same as it was prior to the pregnancy, which means that extra food is not required.
During the second and third trimester, the energy needs of pregnant women increase. To meet energy and nutrient needs during this time, pregnant women are recommended to increase their intake of grain foods (an extra 2 ½ serves per day), and lean meats and alternatives (one extra serve per day).
There are also a number of foods you should aim to avoid.
If you want to know more about Folate or have a personalised assessment you can contact a Naturopath and Nutritionist who specialising in fertility, pre-conception care, pregnancy and women’s health, like Shannon Stokes of www.natology.com.au they have Skype appointments and cater to women all around the world.
Post-Partum check-up; American College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists now recommends that postpartum care be an ongoing process rather than just a single visit after your delivery. Have contact with your health care provider within the first 3 weeks after delivery. Within 12 weeks after delivery, see your health care provider for a comprehensive postpartum evaluation.
After caesarean, caring for your wound and avoiding strenuous activity are also part of a healthy caesarean recovery.
A good quality compression garment designed and made specifically for post-partum recovery will go a long way to speeding up the healing process; reducing episiotomy, c-section and perineal wound swelling and pain.
Kick-start your recovery and fitness post-baby with daily exercises, interviews and video resources designed to help you rebuild your core after pregnancy and beyond from one of Australia’s leading physiotherapists, Shira Kramer who has helped over 5,000 women recover post child birth with safe and effective exercise, including restoring core muscle function and diastasis recti (DRAM) recovery.
Anatomical Support Panels of the SRC Recovery garment range deliver targeted compression,
ideal for treating multiple conditions such as perineal wounds,
C-Section and abdominal muscle separation (DRAM) as well as lower back support.
Enjoy the support to move more freely after delivery and make lifting, feeding, bathing and caring for your
baby easier. With no adjustable buttons, velcro or zips, this specialist compression garment is like a second skin with no need to constantly adjust while wearing.
Whether you are breastfeeding or bottle feeding you need to look after your breasts.
A good quality well-fitting nursing bra is a must. We love CAKE ? and are pretty sure you will love Cake Maternity too.
Soothing nipple cream and a breast ice pack will go a long way to easing your breast aches and pains.
Just as important as your physical health is your mental state. Most mums agree that doing something, anything, that makes you feel good once a day is a great idea. It maybe as small as getting dressed and getting out of your pyjamas, putting on make up or getting out of the house and going for a walk outside.
Perinatal anxiety and depression is common, has many faces and does not discriminate – it can affect anyone, and have devastating consequences for individuals and families if left untreated.
If you or someone you know is struggling with perinatal anxiety and depression, please seek assistance by visiting PANDA– Perinatal Anxiety & Depression Australia or calling the National Helpline 1300 726 306.
The little-known postpartum side effect that you need to know and deal with.
The effects of DRAM or Abdominal Muscle Separation when left untreated may be serious and we aim to make as many women aware of these as we can.
What is Diastasis Recti Abdominis or DRAM?
Also known as abdominal separation it is commonly defined as a gap of roughly 2.7cm or greater between the two sides of the rectus abdominis muscle. Commonly referred to as "jelly belly" or "mummy tummy" the condition can hurt a lot more than just your ego. It occurs when the abdominal wall muscles and their connective tissue attachments stretch. This is the result of the combination of abdominal weakness, hormonal changes, weight gain and abdominal wall stretch exerted by your growing baby.
Women are more susceptible to developing diastasis recti when they have a child with a high birth weight and have multiple pregnancies, have strained or lifted heavy weights during pregnancy, had excessive outer abdominal exercises after the first trimester of pregnancy1 or even pre pregnancy.
53% of women suffer from Diastasis Rectus Abdominus Muscle (DRAM) separation postpartum and 36% of those remain abnormally wide after 5-7 weeks.2
"As a result, DRAM can have a number of implications for pre- and post-natal women. It can affect the stability of the trunk and may contribute to pelvic floor dysfunction, back and pelvic pain and hernias. This may be a factor in persistent post-natal lumbar, pubic symphysis and sacroiliac joint pain and even incontinence due to the interaction of the pelvic floor and abdominal musculature as a stabilising unit" said Shira Kramer, Physiotherapist and founder of Be Active Physio and the Restore Your Core Program.
Incontinence – What it is and Why we need to talk about it
Incontinence is a term that describes any accidental or involuntary loss of urine from the bladder (urinary incontinence) or bowel motion, faeces or wind from the bowel (faecal or bowel incontinence).4 Incontinence is a widespread condition that ranges in severity from 'just a small leak' to complete loss of bladder or bowel control. In fact, over 4.8 million Australians have bladder or bowel control problems for a variety of reasons. Incontinence can be treated and managed. In many cases it can also be cured.4
Incontinence is widespread and the incidence is frightening with over 50% of women aged 45-59 years of age experienced some degree of mild, moderate or severe urinary incontinence5.
As uncomfortable as it is, talking about it now, as much as we may think "it won’t happen to me" or simply "I’m not going to worry about this now", being informed is our best bet at prevention and or management. Where should you start? If you have DRAM, it needs to be treated as a priority. The economic cost to our society and to the health and wellbeing of individuals suffering with symptoms of DRAM is simply too great.6
What is the connection between DRAM, incontinence, Lumbopelvic pain and Dysfunction?
The connection between DRAM and Lumbopelvic pain and dysfunction is now well researched3 and women need to talk about it, as it’s only then they can understand it and treat it with their health providers.
In one study researchers looked at 200 women with diastasis recti. They found the prevalence of incontinence was 45.5%. They found a significant difference in quality of life in the presence of low back pain and urinary incontinence. Also, of statistical significance was the relationship between the number of deliveries and the interectus distance.7
In January 2014 researchers found that 83.33% of the study participants had DRAM and they concluded that women with DRAM tend to have a higher degree of lumbopelvic pain.8
Diastasis recti abdominis (DRA) in the urogynaecological patient was investigated in 2007. The researchers looked at the prevalence of DRA in the urogynaecological population, the differences in characteristics with and without DRA and if the relationship of DRA to support-related pelvic floor dysfunction (SPFD) diagnoses. They found that 52% of the research population had DRA. They also found that the women with DRA were older and had a greater number of pregnancies and births. This group in contrast to the women without DRA also had weaker pelvic floor muscles. Finally, 66% of all the women with DRA had at least one SPFD diagnosis. A relationship was found between the presence of DRA and the SPFD diagnosis of stress urinary incontinence, faecal incontinence and pelvic organ prolapse.9
What to do next?
Do not begin any general exercise until given an all clear after the initial checkup around the 6- week mark
Straining abdominal muscles
Pulling or pushing
Straining causing bearing down
Sitting straight up from lying down
See a Physiotherapist with experience in pre/postnatal care to get a personalised program for your post-partum recovery.
Make sure you have a specialist recovery compression garment like the one endorsed by the Australian Physiotherapy Association that will provide gentle compression to your abdominal muscles. SRC Recovery Shorts and Leggings have Anatomical Support Panels and the top front panel supports the upper and lower abdomen stimulating your muscles to be constantly active, decreasing inter rectus distance10 and helping you heal faster.
If you can’t get to a physiotherapist or find it difficult to attend a number of sessions at a PT studio, then "The Restore Your Core" program maybe your perfect solution. An 8-week online program to kick-start your recovery and fitness post-baby, it includes daily exercises, interviews and video resources designed to help you rebuild your core after pregnancy and beyond. Created by Shira Kramer, owner and director of BeActive Physio in Melbourne. Shira has 15+ years’ experience as a physio, helping over 5,000 women recover post-childbirth with safe and effective exercise, including restoring core muscle function and diastasis recti (DRAM) recovery. Check it out here and get 20% OFF using code SRC20OFF, expires Mother’s Day 12th May.
An answer to an often asked question about the cost of maternity leggings by our founder Sinead O’Donovan.
Absolutely, SRC make amazing quality maternity leggings and shorts - if you have the disposable income. Let’s be honest, most of us live on a budget, especially with the advent of a baby. So to spend $189/$199 AUD ($149/$159 USD) on a pair of maternity leggings or shorts is nothing short of a luxury few can indulge in. Approx. $200 is not cheap for any piece of clothing let alone “maternity clothing”, however many women don't blink when spending that on a pair of shoes.
For many of our customers this all disappears when they examine the cost; considering medical conditions the garments assist with - pregnancy pain relief and a faster recovery after delivery.
Can you put a price on you on getting through the demands of work (and exercise) with less pain during pregnancy? Or the cost to move more freely after delivery and make lifting, feeding, bathing and caring for your baby easier? For me this was priceless which is why I invested so much blood sweat and tears into developing SRC (which is the acronym for Support Recovery Comfort) after my 3rd child.
However if you do want to put some monetary value to the garment, here are 3 'opportunity costs' to think about:
- What is the financial benefit of working an extra few weeks whilst pregnant?
- What is the monetary benefit of coming back to work a few weeks earlier after having your baby?
- Finally there's also a real cost attached to potentially having a few less physical therapist visits.
You can also make up your mind about our maternity leggings and shorts by comparing “apples with apples”:
Activewear or your average cotton leggings available from your department store, whether they are called maternity leggings / pregnancy leggings or not simply have NO (medical) benefits other than comfort and fashion.
Sports compression does not address the needs and conditions of the post-natal mother and will simply not fit (read potentially dangerous to even try on whilst you are pregnant). And in the main they are in the same price bracket as SRC medical compression garments.
Many so-called maternity recovery (post-natal) garments are merely an extension of a sports garment or a hosiery brand, neither "specifically designed with the medical needs of the new mother in mind."
SRC Pregnancy and Recovery garments are recommended by some leading health care professionals and consumers through unsolicited testimonials and feedback* but more importantly tested and loved by 100,000+ mothers worldwide.
Our studies show that ~82% of women who wore SRC Pregnancy Shorts or Leggings experienced a reduction in their discomfort.1
97% of our customers would recommend this garment to other mothers.2
SRC garments are ‘fit for purpose’ – designed by women for women, in consultation with an obstetrician using a structured approach towards research and development. The fabrics and garment being tested multiple times over several months in the days and weeks after childbirth pre-launch into the market and it’s not surprising that SRC Pregnancy and Recovery garments have been endorsed by the Australian Physiotherapy Association.
The patented design features Anatomical Support Panels (ASP) within the garment that has been specially located for either pregnancy or recovery post-delivery to deliver targeted compression for assisting with multiple conditions such as:
Pregnancy: Low Back Pain, Pelvic Girdle Pain, Mild Varicose Veins and Vulval Varicosities.
Recovery: Perineal wounds and stitches, C-Section and Abdominal muscle separation.
The anatomically targeted support panels provide consistent compression during movement. This is achieved utilising True Cross Compression where each fabric layer is cut on a different plane so that during activity no compression is lost at any time.
Unlike mainstream compression products, SRC fabrics have been specifically developed for this purpose, exclusively manufactured for SRC and then independently tested to provide you with the highest quality with maximum support and comfort including features like moisture wicking.
We took the SRC fabric and leading competitors through 100 wash cycles and then retested both fabric extension test. The results showed that the compression properties of our fabric, unlike those of the competition were sustained. After 50 washes, the results showed that the competitor fabric had not only shrunk significantly but was less resistant in the stretch. The SRC fabric had minimum shrinkage and retained its stretch resistance under higher force. The shrinkage of both fabrics stabilized after 100 wash cycles, but only the SRC fabric retained the same high level of compression at the conclusion of the testing.
Gentle medical grade compression avoids muscle deactivation and allows for SRC Recovery garments to be worn day and night, delivering 24-hour ‘wearability’ and pain relief.
The SRC Maternity Leggings and Shorts range is the world’s the largest maternity compression range of garments that is comprised of many different styles and sizes and SRC can proudly say we provide “Support For Life” for every shape and size. SRC pregnancy leggings and shorts and recovery leggings and shorts present a real multi-functional garments; in the case of pregnancy used for work and exercise and for subsequent pregnancies and in the case of recovery, they are also used by many customers for exercise and for aesthetic reasons under fitted clothing for years after.
With the addition of the SRC Pregnancy Mini Shorts (Over the Bump) coming in late December, SRC Health can easily lay claim to having the largest range of pregnancy leggings and shorts that are complimented by the famous range of post-partum recovery shorts and recovery leggings. A total of 8 different garment lengths and styles provide for every preference and life stage, delivering on the unwavering dedication to the SRC vision of “Support For Life”.
Let’s take a look at the 2 styles of SRC Maternity Leggings for Pregnancy.
When it comes to maternity leggings women fall into two groups, those that like to have something over their bump and those that don’t.
The maternity leggings or shorts in the “under the bump style” provide all the support you need without having anything over your tummy. Some women find this more comfortable as during pregnancy they tend to get hot and itchy especially in the abdominal region, with skin expanding quiet rapidly it’s usual to experience these sensitivities. This is why our original under the bump maternity shorts and leggings did not cover the bump. The under the bump maternity shorts and leggings grow with your belly through the use of an adjustable waistband.
The “over the bump” maternity leggings and shorts provide a covering and “feeling of security”, of being hugged by the garment without any level of compression to your pregnant belly. This “perceived feeling of extra support” appeals to many women which together with customer feedback breathed life into this product. The upper abdominal and back panel grows with you as it utilises a super soft and stretchy material.
The SRC pregnancy range comes in 7 different sizes from XXS to XXL and it is important to note that the support panels in all the pregnancy garments are not designed for post-natal recovery, firstly due to the fact that the garment will not fit properly and also the super soft fabric of the upper abdominal & back panels will not provide the compression required to assist with healing abdominal separation.
Lengths of maternity garments are also a matter of preference and what you are likely to get the most use out of:
Leggings - Best for venous return, great value for money, especially being a wardrobe staple that can be worn to the gym and also to work.
Knee Length - Better venous return than the Mini.
Mini Length - More suitable to wear under shorts, skirts and dresses. Great for sleeping in, they provide the necessary support to minimize the effects of pelvic pain during sleep, although you can sleep in all of the SRC garments due to very gentle medical grade compression (4-15mmHg for leggings) that allows for 24-hour wearability without deactivating your muscles.
Some customers prefer to get a few pairs to wear for different purposes and to have a pair whilst the other is in the wash.
Why would you buy a pair of SRC maternity leggings or shorts? Where do we start?
They were designed by women in consultation with an obstetrician to support your “baby carrying” pelvis to reduce the stress placed on it and be in the best shape for delivery. The garments’ gentle compression improves muscle tone and stability and reduces your pelvic and back pain.
The unique and patented Anatomical Support Panels deliver targeted compression, ideal for treating multiple conditions during pregnancy:
Low Back Pain, Sciatica,
Pelvic Girdle Pain,
Mild Varicose Veins (leggings only) and Vulval Varicosities.
Designed to be worn under regular clothes, or as outerwear, SRC maternity leggings and shorts are adjustable and most importantly comfortable.
The lightweight wicking fabric and breathable power mesh lining eliminate odour, providing maximum air circulation and heat dissipation. This assists with the regulation of your body temperature, without compromising the quality or durability of the fabric, allowing you to be comfortable and dry, keeping you cool even in warmer climates. Garment’s flatlock seams in the SRC range increase comfort during exercise or the demands of work. With no branding splashed across the leg panels you can wear them under skirts or dresses like you would with any other leggings. During exercise they will aid in reduction of leg swelling, the leggings (and shorts) can be worn from 12 weeks, until term. They really can replace several different maternity leggings as well as a belly belt.
Talking of belly belts, it is worth mentioning the following:
Belly Belts can provide extra postural support for severe symptoms of Pelvic Girdle Pain and Pelvic Instability
Belly Belts can be worn in conjunction with SRC Pregnancy Leggings and Shorts
Belly Belts are not suitable to treat multiple conditions
Belly Belts are not a multi-purpose garment you can wear in different ways for different occasions, yet they cost at least a third of the purpose made pregnancy garments.
You have to be careful how tightly you do up your belly belt and make sure you do not wear it for too long as this can deactivate your muscles as well as cause other issues.
Belly Belts will not provide you with True Cross Compression - multi-layered support panels that provide consistent and anatomically targeted compression during movement.
We are yet to find anyone who thinks that belly belts are comfortable and work seamlessly with the clothing you are wearing. On the other hand, they are a great solution for pain relief in severe cases and you should always consult with your health care professional to work out the best options for you to ease the aches and pains of your pregnancy. What ever you do, please do not resign yourself to the notion that the pregnancy pains are unavoidable. Seeing your women’s health physiotherapist is a great place to start.
Pregnancy should be more Pleasure than Pain!
Pelvic girdle and lower back pain significantly impact on a woman’s ability to enjoy her pregnancy and motherhood. You don’t have to take it lying down. You can get up and put on your SRC Pregnancy Shorts or SRC Pregnancy Leggings. You deserve the best support and comfort during your pregnancy. Once you get into our pants you will not want to get out of them. We guarantee it or your money back.
Mums are the real superheroes and legends – Yes we mean YOU!
Help yourself before you help others is a principle that applies to many circumstances, none so much as looking after yourself when you are pregnant. Regardless of how ‘equal’ we now are in sharing our domestic, financial and parenting responsibilities with our partners, the mother will remain the cornerstone of the family. You get sick and your whole family is in trouble. When it comes to pain and discomfort during pregnancy you can think of SRC Pregnancy Shorts and SRC Pregnancy Leggings as your “oxygen mask”. If you’re trying to put on an oxygen mask for someone else, you may lose consciousness and you’ll be unable to assist others (or yourself) later. However, if you fit yourself with a mask first, you’d be able to remain conscious and aid people as needed.
One of the most famous fashion clothing campaigns of all time was Levi’s “do you fit the legend” for their classic 501’s. This 1995 Australian version being particularly humorous as the young actors in it are by now most likely parents to teenagers. In the case of SRC Pregnancy Shorts and Leggings with our world leading range of styles and sizes we can honestly say “we will fit the legend that is you”.
“Mothers know best” about many things, yet do we look after our breasts to ensure they are in their best possible shape, before, during and after childbirth?
Based on numerous online articles, citing many worldwide research papers, discussions with our customers, friends and relatives and a recent discussion with a leading Australian maternity bras brand Cake Maternity (available in some of the finest boutiques & department stores around the world) the definitive answer is NO!
As designers and manufacturers of graduated compression maternity leggings and maternity shorts, we have always focused on the lower body. We provide the support necessary for common conditions during pregnancy: treating Low Back Pain, Pelvic Girdle Pain, Mild Varicose Veins, Sciatica and Vulval Varicosities.
We speed up recovery after pregnancy, by assisting with conditions such as: Abdominal Muscle Separation, Perineal Tears and Stitches, C-Section wounds and Low Back Pain.
So naturally with so much to cover on the lower body we don’t often get a chance to discuss the importance of looking after your breasts during the critical time of pregnancy and recovery post-partum.
As the old saying goes “if you can’t measure it, you can’t manage it”. Measurement is absolutely critical for getting the right fit for your compression maternity leggings and shorts and this is equally applicable to maternity bras. Unlike getting measured for SRC Pregnancy or SRC Recovery compression garments which literally takes less than 10 seconds, getting the right measurement for your bra is a little more complicated. No need for concern, as Cake Maternity give you very easy to follow instructions and educate you through the process.
Here’s what we have learned and want to share:
Your body is always changing, and this is especially so during the pregnancy period with many studies citing figures between 65%-80% of women wearing the wrong size bra. The bra marketplace can be overwhelming and confusing. But, unlike feet, breasts change size, shape and position throughout the menstrual cycle and throughout life. Despite this, there is limited guidance for women to assess their own bra fit, something Cake Maternity has been passionately addressing through extensive education in the market place.
Lots of women don't know their actual size or how a bra should fit:
Many women only go for a bra fitting just once in their lives (if that), so it's unsurprising to find that the vast majority of us are wearing the wrong size.
Here are some fantastic resources from Cake’s Bra Fitting Guide that include a downloadable Nursing Bras Guide, as well as videos that explain the need for Maternity Bras and how to select the best nursing bras.
Many department stores and specialty stores have fitting professionals so don’t be shy to get a professional to determine your correct size, however please be aware that bra ﬁtters have varied experience, and there is no agreed level of competency or bra fit qualiﬁcation – another reason to take charge of your breasts’ wellbeing.
Some great and fun alternatives may be making a date of it with your ‘soul sister’ or your partner.
Bra sizes are inconsistent across brands and use different methods to calculate your bra size. Additionally, each bra style fits differently so women need to wear what fits them and not focus so much on numbers and letters. Experts recommend knowing your size across different brands and styles that fit you, including equivalent cup & band sizes.
Bra size is diﬃcult to measure. The accuracy of bra measurement can be aﬀected by breathing, posture at the time of the measurement.
Researchers suggest that bra-size measurement should take place over a well-fitted, unpadded and thin bra. But most women are likely to be fitted in a shop while wearing their own bra, regardless of whether or not it fits well, hence making the measurement less likely to be accurate.
You don’t have to spend a fortune on a great fitting maternity bra, but don’t try to save on an item of clothing that is probably is as important as your shoes! A badly fitting bra is not only going to be uncomfortable it may also have negative effects on your health.
Out of sight should not mean out of mind:
“…no one sees my maternity or pregnancy bras” is not the best way of thinking. Don’t get stuck wearing an old bra that you can't wait to rip off by the end of the day. Breasts literally give children life and nourishment. So, take care of them with bras that provide the required support.
Wearing the wrong size bra is not only uncomfortable, it can cause a range of health problems. Research has shown that a lack of breast support often leads to breast pain, which is reported by 50% of women. A badly fitting bra that doesn’t provide the right support can also lead to breast skin damage such as stretch marks.
Ill-fitting bras have been associated with neck, back and shoulder pain, bad posture, and rubbing and chafing.
Badly fitting bras can cause permanent changes to the body, such as deep grooves in the shoulders caused by pressure from the bra shoulder straps.
The lack of support due to an ill-fitting bra has also been linked to a reluctance to exercise, which can lead to negative long-term health outcomes.
Keep in mind you are likely to get more wear and bang for your buck out of a plain t-shirt bra than a fancy frilly number that only makes appearances on those special occasions.
Make sure you replace your bras after they are stretched out of shape. As time goes on and your bra begins to lose its elasticity, you can adjust the hook eye closure to tighten your bra, giving it a longer life span." On average after approximately 6-8 months of regular wear the elastic in your bra is going to have more give, so chances are that your bra is no longer laying horizontally across you back, with the back wings of your bra moving up toward your shoulder blades and your breasts drooping forward.
Wear and Care - always read the wear and care and the following advice is so similar to Wear and Care for SRC Health compression garments.
If you can't find the time to hand-wash your bra, put your bras in a wash bag with the hooks closed to stop them snagging on and ruining your clothes. Use the gentle cycle on your machine and once out of the wash, lay them out flat to dry.
Don't use the dryer to dry your bras. The machine will overheat the elastic components of your bra, break them down, shrink other materials and wear out the support even faster.
Despite this fairly long list of health implications, millions of women continue to wear ill-fitting bras. We hope that we can help through collaborations with companies like Cake Maternity by educating mums everywhere. “Support For Life” is not just our slogan, it’s our reason for being and we love working with likeminded people and organizations. The similarities between Cake Maternity and SRC Health are uncanny:
Cake Maternity was also founded 10 years ago, in Australia
Cake Maternity and SRC Health both originated from a personal need, which became a mission to design functional and stylish garments, by women and for women,
just like SRC Maternity Leggings and Shorts, every Cake Maternity product is painstakingly constructed with the right assortment of fabric, materials and accessories to suit you. From luxurious fabrics and comfy cotton lining for improved breathability, internalised seams, graduated straps, 6 hook & eye closures for expansion and contraction of the rib cage, every bra is created to make you look and feel your very best.
Just like our founder, Sinead O’Donovan, Cake Maternity founder, Tracey Montford, retains the passion for her vision and is actively involved in the design and direction of the business.
Periods of pregnancy and recovery after delivery can be some of the most challenging for women and their families. Please look after your physical, emotional and mental health during this time.
Perinatal anxiety and depression is common, has many faces and does not discriminate – it can affect anyone, and have devastating consequences for individuals and families if left untreated. SRC Health is committed to raising awareness about perinatal anxiety and depression and is proud to support PANDA in their mission to improve women's emotional and mental health through the challenges of pregnancy and new parenthood.
If you or someone you know is struggling with perinatal anxiety and depression, please seek assistance by visiting PANDA– Perinatal Anxiety & Depression Australia or calling the National Helpline 1300 726 306. https://www.panda.org.au/
As with all health-related products, the key to making the right decision for yourself, especially during the period of pregnancy, is knowledge and understanding and then potentially consulting a Women’s Health Care Professional like a Women’s Health Physiotherapist. So, what are Belly Belts, Maternity Belts and Pregnancy Belts?
Belly Belts and Maternity Belts
Belly Belts are also sometimes incorrectly referred to as Belly Bands, however there is a difference between the two.
Belly Belts are designed to carry your belly weight. Not as lightweight as belly bands because they hold up the pregnant belly and take the pressure off your back.
Belly bands on the other hand, according to Pregnant and Perfect provide you with proper ‘coverage’. When your pants stop fitting, the fabric you place around yourself is called a belly band. Huggies define the belly band as “an item of clothing and looks like a tube top or boob tube.” It is a wide circular strip of fabric, which is seamless and knitted; much like a pair of pantyhose is woven. Made from fibres like Cotton + Elastane/Spandex or Lycra, they stretch in order to stay up and on and also to “grow” with your abdomen as your pregnant belly expands.
Because the term “belly belt” does not specify whether it is for pregnancy or post-natal use in the same way “maternity belts” don’t, these terms are ambiguous, and you need to work out what stage of your maternity journey they are for; during pregnancy or for recovery after birth. So maternity belts and belly belts can be either a Pregnancy Support Belt or a Post Pregnancy Tummy Wrap.
Pregnancy Belts clearly state that they are for wear during pregnancy hence making it easier to learn about the pros and cons for your specific circumstances before consulting your health care professional.
The Good – Why You should Wear a Belly Belt, Maternity Belt or Pregnancy Belt:
Approximately 70% of all pregnant women suffer low back pain and up to 45% exhibit symptoms of Pelvic Girdle Pain (PGP)1,2. Women with one or both conditions can find it difficult to cope with and participate in everyday activities.
Here are a number of good reasons to wear pregnancy belts during your pregnancy:
Relieving pain in joints, muscles and lower back
Assisting with pain of the sacroiliac joint and hip joint
Decrease the discomfort and provide support to the pelvic area during various activities by stabilising the pelvis and relieving pressure from the lower back.
Help improve your posture
According to Dr. Christopher Smith, obstetrician and gynaecologist, maternity belts offer additional comfort during daily activities, they reduce soreness associated with abdominal wall expansion in the late trimesters.
Because Belly Belts and Maternity Belts could also refer to post-partum belly belts, or post-partum girdles for after delivery, we’ll have a look at the benefits they can deliver after you give birth to your baby:
Postpartum belly belt can help to speed up the recovery process by providing support to the abdominal muscles that have separated during pregnancy and encourage them to return to their pre-pregnancy state.
The post-partum maternity belt may also assist with better healing of your C-section scar.
Finally, it will provide stability and support to assist with your general mobility post delivery
The Bad – Why wearing a Belly Belt, Maternity Belt or Pregnancy Belt may not be your optimal solution
The issue with most belly belts, even those that have stretchable inserts, is that they do not move with your body, they can feel restrictive and need constant readjustment which can be frustrating to some and perfectly ok for others. It’s always a good idea to try one on and/or make sure you can get a refund if the product simply irritates you when you have to constantly readjust when sitting down or getting up. Pregnancy belts are not the most comfortable or flattering things to wear, especially if you are wearing them under anything that is fitted as they will show through.
Many pregnancy belts, belly belts and maternity belts have hooks, loops or Velcro to adjust the belt and keep it in the right position and at the right tension, however this also means there is a chance of these catching and ripping your clothes.
The Ugly – Why you need to take care when it comes to wearing pre-natal or post-natal Belly Belts or Maternity Belts
Belly Belts and Maternity Belts fall into the same category as Shapewear which by definition are designed to change shape with high levels of compression being applied to your body. Here are some medical opinions:
According to Sherry A. Ross, MD, author of “she-ology, The Definitive Guide to Women’s Intimate Health. Period”, the benefits and risks for pregnant women depend on the maternity shapewear product, and how much you wear it. She goes on to say that:
Maternity shapewear that is too tight and puts too much pressure on the body is never a good idea. If you have trouble breathing, or you're in pain while wearing your shapewear, that's a sign that it's probably too tight for you. Discomfort, pain, reduced blood circulation and heartburn are some of potential issues from maternity shapewear that is too tight or worn for prolonged periods of time. Ross is most concerned about the Kardashian favourite “waist trainers” that can, if done up too tightly, compress and squeeze internal organs and ribs.
Aforementioned Dr. Christopher Smith, points out that there is some concern that wearing a maternity support belt during pregnancy may impair blood circulation, and negatively impact pelvic floor and bowel function. He recommends women wear belly bands for short periods at a time to prevent dependency and encourages them to use maternity support belts in conjunction with core muscle strengthening programs.
Shapewear that’s too tight may lead to health problems, says neurologist Orly Avitzur, MD, medical advisor for Consumer Reports. "Any time we put on really tight garments we take the risk of compressing organs or nerves." Avitzur says that in her practice, she has had patients complain of tingling and numbness in the front to outer thigh region, from hip to knee. Avitzur has linked the cause back to restrictive clothing like shapewear or skinny jeans.
You can also become overly dependent on the pregnancy belt which is the exact opposite of what you should be trying to achieve. “Activate don’t de-activate” is often heard advice of many women’s health physiotherapists as well as the founder of SRC Health, Sinead O’Donovan who developed 2 ranges of gentle grade medical compression garments; one for during pregnancy and another for recovery after pregnancy.
The commonly accepted advice about belly belts means that you shouldn’t be wearing it all day long every day. Wearing it just for two to three hours every day is best. If you were to wear it too long, you may end up weakening your lower body muscles causing muscle wastage: a garment that supports your stomach and bottom all day, every day, will take the load away from muscles and ligaments.
London-based physiotherapist Sammy Margo, a spokeswoman for the Chartered Society of Physiotherapy, explains: 'What I say to my patients is “use it or lose it”. 'What we find is that women who wear maternity shapewear when they have no physical need can weaken muscles in their bottoms, stomachs and lower backs. 'After the birth of their baby, they are more likely to be injured as they lift and care for their newborns' she warns.
So please ask your doctor how to wear your belly belt to avoid putting pressure on your uterus, and only wear a belly belt for a couple of hours a day, never wear a pregnancy belt continually.
SRC Pregnancy and SRC Recovery Compression Garments
Celebrating their 10th year anniversary, SRC compression garments are a little more expensive but also present more versatile and functional investment. Their purpose made, gentle medical grade compression garment of 4mmHg to 15mmHG can be worn as both outerwear as well as an undergarment and can be worn 24 hours per day without deactivating your muscles. Designed by women for women in consultation with an obstetrician, the SRC Pregnancy and Recovery garments address the majority of the most common conditions during and after pregnancy.
SRC Pregnancy Shorts and Leggings are ideal for providing pain relief during pregnancy and treating Low Back Pain, Pelvic Girdle Pain, Mild Varicose Veins, Sciatica and Vulval Varicosities. Designed to be worn under regular clothes, adjustable and most importantly comfortable, SRC Pregnancy Shorts and Leggings will assist you in getting through the demands of work and exercise and aid in reduction of leg swelling, they can be worn from 12 weeks, until term.
Some women combine a pregnancy belt and their SRC Pregnancy Compression Shorts /Leggings. The benefit for women with severe pain is that they can wear their Shorts/Leggings 24 hours per day without causing atrophy due to prolonged muscle deactivation and during periods where they need to be on their feet a lot, they can combine both products by adding the pregnancy belt for additional support.
SRC Recovery Shorts and Leggings can assist women with fast tracking recovery after pregnancy by treating Abdominal Muscle Separation, Perineal Tears and stitches, C-Section wounds, Sciatica and Low Back Pain. They provide the support to move more freely after delivery and make lifting, feeding, bathing and caring for your baby easier. With no adjustable buttons, velcro or zips, the garment is like a second skin with no need to constantly adjust while wearing. Recommended by health care professionals for improving mobility and pelvic muscle function post-partum these garments are ideal for exercise and for aesthetic reasons under fitted clothing. They can be worn the day after delivery and for as long as they provide benefit.
The major differences between SRC compression garments and Pregnancy Belts, Maternity Belts and Belly Belts of all types, can be summarised as follows:
Pregnancy Belts, Maternity Belts and Belly Belts:
Are not able to be worn safely day and night whilst providing pain relief as they do not have gentle medical grade compression. To get the right level of compression you are relying on your ‘feel’ potentially risking muscle deactivation and the problems associated with the belt providing a potentially dangerous level of compression
Can’t treat multiple conditions like the SRC compression garments that utilise Anatomical Support Panels:
Pregnancy Garments: Lower Back Pain, Vulval Variscosities, Pelvic Instability and Pelvic Girdle Pain.
Do not have True Cross Compression - multi-layered support panels that provide consistent and anatomically targeted compression during movement.
Do not have moisture wicking fabric that eliminates odour.
Do not have flat lock seams that increase comfort and don’t aggravate wounds.
Rely on adjustable Velcro zips and clips making them less comfortable and convenient
Are not a multi-purpose garment that is ideal for exercise, work and everyday wear as well as for aesthetic reasons under fitted clothing.
A holistic approach to management of these pre and post pregnancy conditions will produce the best outcome. Visiting a Women’s Health Physiotherapist can greatly assist as they will provide you with a tailored program which may include clinical Pilates as well as fit you for the right garment for supporting you through the pregnancy journey.
Regardless of the time at which you decide to take your maternity leave there will be more on your to-do list than “the most productive cyborg mother to be” can ever hope to achieve. Make sure to prioritise and don’t stress.
Relationships - catching up with old friends, spending more time with your partner and getting some quality “me time” which is about to get scarcer, is high on most mum to be lists during maternity leave.
Reading - from favorite novel to all of the parenting advice books and blogs on baby sleep whispering, maternity leave is the perfect time for catching up on all those bookmarks and researching answers to all those questions you have just had to put side until now.
Ready? Nothing ever prepares you for being a parent, but you can make life a little less stressful in those first few weeks by stocking up on baby supplies and frozen meals for the rest of the family, testing new baby products and gadgets. Need to find maternity and feeding clothing that will match with your existing wardrobe and provide superior comfort perfect for pregnancy, feeding and beyond? Search no further than the luxuriously soft bamboo fabric range by SRC, with all pieces designed to accommodate your changing body.
Rest – you can’t store it up for use at a later date, but maternity leave is an ideal time to relax and really do whatever you want to as well as to look after yourself emotionally and physically.
Discomfort and pain associated with pelvic instability, vulval varicosities, lower back pain, sciatica, pelvic joint inﬂammation and varicose veins can signiﬁcantly impact on your ability to enjoy your pregnancy. SRC Pregnancy Shorts and Leggings can help ease the strains of pregnancy during your maternity leave, provide support and aid mobility so that expectant mothers can work and exercise pain free throughout pregnancy. With the adjustable waistband, these garments can be worn from 12 weeks until late term.
Recovery – Healing takes time and babies take a toll on all our bodies. Whether you want to regain your pre-baby shape faster or have the support to move more freely after delivery to make everyday movement like lifting, feeding, bathing and caring for your baby easier, you can’t go past the recovery essential like SRC Recovery Shorts or Recovery Leggings. No adjustable buttons, velcro or zips, the garment is like a second skin with no need to constantly adjust while wearing. Recommended by health care professionals for improving mobility and pelvic muscle function post-partum, the Anatomical Support Panels deliver targeted compression, ideal for treating multiple conditions such as perineal wounds, C-Section, abdominal muscle separation (DRAM). SRC Recovery garments are ideal for exercise and for aesthetic reasons under fitted clothing. They can be worn the day after delivery and for as long as they provide benefit.
Just remember to enjoy this special time and look after yourself.
According to Shape.com, the world’s No1. fitness publication, shapewear is the biggest hoax in fashion history. Celebrities and everyday women love the results and swear by their secret slimming undergarment, but many others raise the potential health implications whilst also putting the marketing of these garments under the microscope; are we being misled by "toned" bodies that are really squeezed into figure-flattering undergarments?
All this is much more complicated when you are pregnant, and the health of your unborn child becomes a consideration, so we’ve decided to put the maternity shapewear category under the microscope, starting with the term itself - “maternity shapewear”. It’s 2 words that should not be seen together, being fused, whether by attention seeking marketers, by Instagramming celebrities looking for brevity or simply the result of the public reacting to the confusion caused by the actions of the market influencers.
What is Maternity Shapewear?
Maternity shapewear is becoming a “maternity fashion de rigueur”. According to Refinery29.com, maternity shapewear is designed to "shape" your body”. Who doesn’t like the sound of a perkier behind and smoother curves whilst getting support for the lower back and tummy and leaving room for the baby? They tell us it’s more comfortable than trying to wear "regular shapewear" when you're pregnant, but should you be wearing either is the real question? Just because a second solution is better than the first, it doesn’t mean that the first was ever a good solution to begin with. Should comfort and health not be the primary focus. Are we really expected to squeeze ourselves into maternity shapewear for the sake of fashion and approval of strangers?
So now we have “regular shapewear” and “maternity shapewear”? No wonder there’s confusion.
According to Sherry A. Ross, MD, author of “she-ology, The Definitive Guide to Women’s Intimate Health. Period”, the benefits and risks for pregnant women depend on the maternity shapewear product, and how much you wear it. She goes on to say that:
Maternity shapewear that is too tight and puts unwanted pressure on the body is never a good idea. If you have trouble breathing, or you're in pain while wearing your shapewear, that's a sign that it's probably too tight for you. This advice also applies equally to regular shapewear.
Discomfort, pain, reduced blood circulation, heartburn and yeast infections are some of potential issues from incorrectly fitting maternity shapewear and regular shapewear.
Moderation is the key and we interpret this as “… don’t wear for too many hours in a row.”
Ross is most concerned about the Kardashian favourite “waist trainers” that can, if done up too tightly, compress and squeeze internal organs and ribs.
So what type of garments does this relatively new term “maternity shapewear” encompass?
Maternity Belts, also known as Maternity Support Belts, Belly Bands, Belly Belts, Tummy Wraps and Maternity Girdles.
Maternity Support Belts – According to Dr. Christopher Smith, obstetrician and gynaecologist, they offer additional comfort during daily activities, they reduce soreness associated with abdominal wall expansion in the late trimesters. He does point out that there is some concern that wearing a maternity support belt during pregnancy may impair blood circulation, and negatively impact pelvic floor and bowel function. He recommends women wear belly bands for short periods at a time to prevent dependency and encourages them to use maternity support belts in conjunction with core muscle strengthening programs.
When it comes to weight loss, Dr. Smith points out that there is no current medical evidence to support claims that belly bands promote weight loss following pregnancy, and their use should not replace the role of healthy lifestyle modifications including a balanced diet and exercise regime.
So why wear a Pregnancy belt / Maternity belt?
There are a range of valid reasons as long as you also understand the reasons not to wear pregnancy belts:
Relieving joint, muscular and lower back pain
Assisting with sacroiliac joint pain and hip pain
Decreasing discomfort and provide support to the pelvic area during various physical activities by stabilising and relieving pressure from the lower back.
Help with improving posture
The reasons not to wear a Pregnancy Belt
Mums can become overly dependent on the pregnancy belt which is the exact opposite of what you should be trying to achieve. “Activate don’t de-activate” is often heard advice of many women’s health physios as well as the founder of innovative pregnancy and post-natal compression garments for women, Sinead O’Donovan. The commonly accepted advice about belly belts means that you shouldn’t be wearing it all day long every day. Wearing it just for two to three hours every day is best. If you were to wear it too long, you may end up weakening your lower body muscles. There is also the troubling issue of muscle wastage: a garment that supports your stomach and bottom all day, every day, will take the load away from muscles and ligaments. London-based physiotherapist Sammy Margo, a spokeswoman for the Chartered Society of Physiotherapy, explains: 'What I say to my patients is “use it or lose it”. 'What we find is that women who wear maternity shapewear when they have no physical need can weaken muscles in their bottoms, stomachs and lower backs. 'After the birth of their baby, they are more likely to be injured as they lift and care for their newborns' she warns.
Also, wearing it too long especially if it’s too tight can cause a lot of compression on your abdomen, which can have negative effects on your body’s ability to circulate your blood. Apart from the possibility of high blood pressure, the constant use of a belly band could also cause indigestion or even heartburn because of bad blood circulation. Ask your doctor how to wear your belly belt to avoid putting pressure on your uterus, and only wear a belly belt for a couple of hours a day, never wear a pregnancy belt continually.
More expensive but much more versatile options are purpose made medical grade compression garment like SRC Pregnancy and SRC Recovery Compression Shorts and Leggings. Where maternity belts may not be comfortable or flattering, especially with fitted shirts or dresses, making people stare at your belly wondering what you have strapped to it, compression garments can be worn as an undergarment or a piece of your outerwear wardrobe providing a flattering effect under fitted clothing.
You may simply not like wearing a pregnancy belt, so it may be a good idea to try one on before buying or better still borrow one, so you can try it for a number of hours to see whether you like it or not and prevent the potential of adding another dust gathering item to your never worn drawer.
Belly Belts / Pregnancy Belts have hooks, loops or Velcro to adjust the belt and keep it in the right position and at the right tension, however the very feature that provide the benefits, is also a hindrance of catching on and ripping your clothes.
The physical difficulty of removing constricting shapewear could cause other problems, according to Gail Johnson, a midwife and education adviser at the Royal College of Midwives. She tells women to embrace their natural pregnancy shape instead of trying to constrict it.
This term highlights the inadequacy of the word Maternity when applied to many product categories. For example. Take a multifunctional garment like SRC compression, Pregnancy and Recovery, Shorts and Leggings. Approved by the APA and originally designed in consultation with an obstetrician, each Pregnancy and Recovery garment address a different “maternity stage”;
Both types of maternity leggings can be worn under regular clothing, the leg panels are deliberately logo free on the visible sections to make them the perfect choice for both work, gym, or a Sunday morning brunch. The gentle medical grade compression range of 4mmHg – 15mmHg does not de-activate the muscles and makes it safe and comfortable to wear all day and sleep with them at night. 24 Hour wearability ensures comfort and relief. Find out more at www.srchealth.com
Embrace yourself, regardless of your shape, there’s only one you, you are unique. Look after yourself and don’t forget to enjoy this special time in your life.
Get out of your activewear and get into SRC’s medical grade compression to fast track your recovery while addressing conditions like Abdominal Muscle Separation (DRAM), Perineal Tears and stitches, C-Section wounds, Sciatica and Low Back Pain. SRC Recovery Shorts and Leggings were developed specifically for this reason.
Let's have a look at what's available out there in the market:
Fit for Purpose Compression
Activewear has NO medical benefit other than comfort and fashion. It will not assist you in speeding up your recovery after delivery or provide the support necessary to move more freely or make lifting, feeding, bathing and caring for your baby easier.
Many so-called recovery garments are merely an extension of a sports compression garment or a hosiery brand, neither "specifically designed with the medical needs of the new mother in mind."
SRC Recovery compression garments are "fit for purpose" and are the premier choice of leading healthcare professionals and consumers.
Here are 7 reasons why you should choose SRC Recovery Compression garments:
SRC garments are ‘fit for purpose’ – they have been designed by women for women, in consultation with an obstetrician and a structured approach was taken towards research and development. The patented compression garment design features Anatomical Support Panels (ASP) within the garment that has been specially located for recovery post-delivery to deliver targeted compression for healing multiple conditions such as Perineal wounds and stitches, C-Section and Abdominal muscle separation.
The anatomically targeted support panels provide consistent compression during movement. This is achieved utilising True Cross Compression where each fabric layer is cut on a different plane so that during activity no compression is lost at any time.
Unlike mainstream compression products, SRC fabrics have been specifically developed and milled for the purpose of assisting with postnatal conditions and providing support for improving mobility and pelvic muscle function post-partum. Exclusively manufactured for SRC and then independently tested multiple times over several months in the days and weeks after childbirth before being launched into the market, the fabric is of exceptional quality, with maximum support and comfort including features like moisture wicking.
The SRC fabric and a leading competitors fabric were put through a 100 wash cycles and then both were re-tested using a fabric extension test. The results showed that the compression properties of the SRC fabric, unlike those of the competition were sustained. After 50 washes, the results showed that the competitor fabric had not only shrunk significantly, but was less resistant in the stretch. The SRC fabric had minimum shrinkage and retained its stretch resistance under higher force. The shrinkage of both fabrics stabilized after 100 wash cycles, but only the SRC fabric retained the same high level of compression at the conclusion of the testing.
Gentle medical grade compression avoids muscle deactivation and allows for SRC Recovery garments to be worn day and night, whilst activating your muscles. Unlike shapewear with medium to high levels of compression, SRC recovery garments deliver 24-hour wearability, support and pain relief.
With no adjustable buttons, velcro, zips or clips, SRC Recovery compression garments are more convenient and comfortable as there is no need to regularly adjust while wearing. The SRC Recovery garments come in 3 lengths; Knee (9 sizes), Mini (7 sizes) as well as Leggings (7 sizes).
The SRC Recovery range delivers a multi-functional garment to new mums. It not only treats the most common conditions post-delivery during the initial 10-12 week recovery period but it is also used by many customers for exercise and for aesthetic reasons under fitted clothing for years after.
Back pain or lower back pain in early pregnancy is an inevitable reality for most women. Medical experts suggest that back pain could be majorly caused by the pregnancy hormones relaxing the ligaments around the joints. Additionally, the natural weight gain and postural changes due to the bump position contribute to the problem. To get a long-lasting relief for lower back pain, here are six great stretches that will assist in relieving back pain during your most demanding time. But before you begin some wise words of advice - according to Marney Jury, Physiotherapist and Director Sum of Us Studio, these exercises are effective and safe for MOST pregnant ladies, however, each pregnancy is unique and individual, and one woman's needs and capabilities commonly differs from another's. A women's health physiotherapist is best to check in with to optimise your personal needs.
1. Twisted Namaskara - Stand straight keeping a shoulder level distance between the two legs. Cross both your hands, putting the right hand underneath your left hand. Remember, both hands, palms, and fingers must point towards the ceiling. Let your left hand touch the right palm or the thumb, depending on your flexibility. Now, hold this twisted Namaskara position and raise both the hands for 20 seconds, you will feel the shoulder blades opening. This exercise gives a nice warm-up stretch to the back
2. Cat Stretch - This one is a very familiar yoga posture. Make sure you are on your four-point base, your hands underneath your shoulders touching the ground and legs under your hips. Now, as you breathe in, round off your back, bending your head down gazing towards your belly. Hold on for a few seconds, then release the position and breathe out. This stretch helps to strengthen your lower back muscles.
3. Gentle Spinal Mobilization - Sit down cross-legged maintaining a good posture. Place your left hand on the right foot and drag your upper body behind so as to feel the twist in your lower back. Same stretch on the other side. Repeat 10 counts on each side. This stretch helps to release any tension in the mid back.
4. Crescent Moon Posture - Stand straight with a shoulder wide distance between your legs. Raise both hands and join them, pointed towards the ceiling. Now bend sideways and hold on to that posture for a few seconds and breathe normally. Repeat this to the other side and keep doing until you have finished 10 counts on each side. This workout refreshes your tired and lax muscles.
5. Pelvic Tilt - Lie down on your back and bend your legs such that your knees are pointing to the ceiling. Now observe your spine, there is a small arch of the lower back. Press your back into the floor, you will observe your abdomen cave in. Hold for 4 counts. Press, hold and release. Repeat it for 8 times. Remember to breathe normally. This tilt strengthens your back muscles and abdomen.
6. Pelvic Tilt Raise - Lie down on your back and bend your legs such that your knees are pointing to the ceiling. Place your hands beside your hips. Raise your hips to the maximum level by pushing your abdominal muscles. Hold on to 4 counts and release. Again, repeat this exercise for 8 times. This is a common pre-natal exercise and best treatment to relieve lower back pain.
Performed on a daily basis these exercises are very beneficial in improving back pain during pregnancy. Remember to enjoy this special journey and pamper yourself on the way and of course don’t forget to check out the SRC Pregnancy Shorts and Leggings for pregnancy-related pain and discomfort such as:
or simply as a great support garment with exceptional comfort to assist you in getting through the demands of work and exercise with less pain and swelling of your legs, they can be worn from 12 weeks, until late term.