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Test-Run: Merrithew Prenatal Pilates DVDs

Pilates is designed to improve physical strength, flexibility, and posture, and enhance mental awareness - key components which are integral in preparing for labor and delivery. At 7.5 months pregnant, I’m continuously looking for ways to keep active and prep for D-Day. MERRITHEW ™ has a DVD pack (2 prenatal/1 postnatal) that I tested this month. I found that both 30 minutes videos were gentle, perfect for any trimester, and very low-impact. A quick look at both below (saving the Post-Natal workout for the fall!).

Prenatal Pilates on the Ball: The warm up movements on the ball felt great to mobilize my tight ribs and spine, and I liked the balance of moves for full-body and how the workout flowed. On a level 1-10 (based on my personal fitness level), this was about a 2/3. However, if some of these movements are new to you, I could see this being a more challenging workout based on where you are in your pregnancy.

Additional takeaways: Some of the core-focused moves need a certain level of mindfulness or pre-education if you are already experiencing diastasis. This is not an ideal option for moms on the road, since you will need equipment for this workout.

Prenatal Pilates on the Mat: The concept here is something I preach quite often – lengthening muscles that may become tight and strengthening key muscle groups that are integral during pregnancy and after. This is a very gentle program, but I enjoyed how I felt a light realignment of my body after a long day. Since sleeping is becoming mildly uncomfortable for me in the third trimester, doing this before bed provided a little bit of relief.

Additional takeaways: Great for traveling. I would add this into my routine after a flight or a long car ride. More of a focus on breathing in this DVD; however, if you are unfamiliar with diaphragmatic breathing, and aren’t quite sure what to do with your ab muscles (remember those?), you may need some hands-on instruction.

Want to try this at home? You can win a full Stott Prenatal Pilates Package worth $170 HERE.

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