KATHLEEN LENINGER, PT, DPT.
For the last two years, I have been doing something “Pilates” at least once a week. I don’t do SLT or use a reformer, I just do some kind of basic Pilates techniques on my own for a few minutes every few days. I loved going to Pilates class. But since moving to Connecticut, it has been hard for me to find a time that works and then the pandemic made it even more difficult. Any of my clients can tell you, Pilates is my go-to first step in rehabbing an injury (even if I don’t tell you it’s Pilates).
I was introduced to Pilates in college. I had two low disc herniation injuries from high school and had to stop running. Someone suggested Pilates to me and not only did I enjoy doing it, but I was able to decrease my pain and return to running. That was when my interest in basic Pilates for rehab started.
On January 6th, 2021, the power of Pilates once again changed my life. At 10:30 AM after hours of labor (Pilates and yoga breathing was very helpful here), it was time for my son Logan to be born. My doctor warned me that for first-time moms, it usually takes three hours to push. He asked me if I wanted to rest first, but I knew in my heart I could do it. My husband was in charge of counting off 3 rounds of 10 seconds. The resident told me to pull my knees to my chest, tuck my chin to my chest, and around my spine. These cues were very familiar to me. This was Pilates. After my first few pushes the resident and doctor both complimented me on my pushing skills and I literally said to them “it’s the Pilates”. After an hour and a half of the ultimate Pilates workout, Logan was born.
Since Logan’s arrival, I have done some basic Pilates every day: two to three exercises for two to three sets. My goals are to maintain a healthy spine, carry my baby without pain, and restore my pelvic floor. I really think my routine is what has helped me recover so fast and it has helped with stress management. I am not worried about six-pack abs or a beach body because I need to stay healthy and value a high quality of life!