Morgan Faith Suarez is a ballerina mama who teaches barre at Meraki Barre in Costa Mesa, CA. When she got pregnant, Morgan and her boss started playing with the idea of a baby-wearing barre class, and it slowly became a reality. No surprise that the mamas (and babies!) love it. Not only is it a great workout that you can bring your baby to, but it’s also a great way to get to know other moms in the community. Why wasn’t there one of these when I just had River?!?! Since there’s nothing like this amazing fitness class in NYC, we asked Morgan to create an at-home exercise program for you and your babe, all in a baby carrier! Let us know what you think about this baby wearing fitness workout!
Baby Wearing While Exercising
We would not recommend working out postpartum before getting a doctor’s approval. If anything hurts, check your form to make sure it’s correct, or stop and simply move on to the next exercise. Listen to your body.
You will need: A chair, countertop, or table, and a pillow or ball.
1. Calf Raises
Start in first position (heels together and toes out), pulling up the knee caps with the thighs engaged.
- First position. Lift and lower 10 times.
- Parallel. Lift and lower 10 times.
- Turned in. Lift and lower 10 times.
- From a parallel position, plie (bend your knees with your knees tracking straight over your toes, tailbone tucked under, and core engaged), straighten your legs, and then turn your feet to first position and plie again. Repeat from parallel to first 10 times.
- From there, in first position (heels in, toes out), stay low in the plie and lift then lower your heels 10 times.
- With heels high, still in your plie, pulse your plie an inch up and down 10 times.
- Then, swing your hips to the right then to the left, focusing on squeezing each oblique and keeping the tailbone tucked under. 10 each side.
- Tuck your hips forward and back, focusing on squeezing your glutes, 10 times.
- Pulse your knees back 10 times.
- Last, hold low in your plie for 10 seconds.
3. Lunge Lifts
- Starting with one leg extended behind, lower into a lunge and then lift, straightening the legs. As you lunge, make sure the knees are tracking straight over the toes, and the pelvis is right in the center of both legs. 10 times.
- Pulse up and down an inch in your lunge 10 times.
- Lift and lower the front heel 10 times.
- Keep the front heel high and tuck the hips forward and back 10 times.
- Pulse down in your lunge again 10 times then hold as low as your can for 10 seconds.
4. Attitude Lifts
From a first position, standing leg slightly bent, bring the working leg toes to your standing legs ankle, with your knee out, toes in as shown below.
- Lift the leg straight up to the back (not out to the side) and lower 10 times.
- Keeping the leg up high in the back, turn the knee in and out 10 times.
- Turn the standing foot into parallel (no longer turned out) and the working leg knee down, foot flexed. Lower and lift 10 times.
- Lower and lift to the side 10 times.
- Pulse up to the side 10 times.
5. Pillow Abs
Grab a ball or a pillow and place in under your lower back. Tailbone is neutral, abs are engaged, naval is pulling into the spine.
- Press back and lift 10 times.
- Bicycles: twist left, pulling the left knee in, then twist right, pulling the right knee in. Do 10 each.
- With legs extended out, lift the right leg up, press back your torso as you lower the right leg down, then lift up the left leg and lower. Do 10 alternating each leg.
- Feet flat on the floor, twist to the right while pressing back, lift in the center, then twist to the left. 10 each side.
- Twist right and left faster, pressing into the pillow with each twist, without lifting in the center. 10 each side.
- Pulse back into the pillow 10 times.
6. Mermaid Abs
Lean back on your forearms, staying strong in the shoulders (try not to sink down as the exercise goes on), with the legs bent in front. Like a mermaid. This exercise engages the obliques as well as the lower abs.
- Lower the legs to the right, extend, bend, come back to center. Then lower to the left, extend, bend, come back to center. 10 each side.
- Lower to the right then extend and bend (kick) 10 times.
- Extend the legs out and flutter the legs (sliding the feet past each other in a swimming motion) for 10 seconds. Then, with legs extended, lower down for 2 seconds, and lift for two seconds, 10 times. This is a slow controlled movement.
- Repeat steps 2 and 3 on the left side.
- Extend the legs up in the center, lower down with flexed feet, bend the knees, then kick the legs back up into extension 10 times.
- Open the legs into a straddle then lift crossing the feet right over left, then left over right. 10 times.
7. Cool Down
- Take a butterfly stretch, adding in an oblique reach.
- Cross the right leg over the left and hug your right knee in. Then stack the legs on top of each other and fold over. Repeat on the left.
- Lunge forward with a 90 degree bend in your knee (you can hold onto your chair for support), then drop the knee and grab the opposite foot as arm, stretching out the thigh and hip flexor. Then, keeping the knee on the ground, pressing your hips down, extend the arms up and breath.
And that’s it! A quick 20-minute baby wearing workout you can do in the comfort of your own home, with your beloved babe snuggled nicely up against your chest.
What about you, mamas? Do you have any baby wearing exercise tips?