Cathy Carr, Healthy Communities Manager:

The lockdown experience was challenging for many of us not to mention new mums who are learning top deal with a new baby and due to lockdown don't have the peer support and social contact which is much needed at this crucial time. Many mums will be dealing with challenging experiences which can seriously affect their mental health. Mums' Zone provided a weekly opportunity for the mums to come together for them and take part in an hour long guided post-natal yoga and relaxation class with our experienced yoga teacher.

Before the pandemic outbreak, mums would get together weekly with their babies and take part in the gentle yoga classes followed by healthy refreshments and an opportunity to listen to different health and wellbeing talks and meet other mums.

The face to face sessions had to stop in March due to Covid but we offered virtual classes and the number of mums attending was fantastic – averaging over 20 mums a week! We promoted the classes through our networks and facebook and mums participating were from all over Berkshire. A code of conduct was put into place along with a risk assessment and the sessions all went very well and the feedback was really positive.

Below are some of the quotes the mums sent us:

  • "Thank you for the yoga class on Saturday. I already feel like I benefited from it and I look forward to the next class! I am hoping yoga aids my healing from the physical trauma (surprisingly I am very well mentally!) and help to loosen up some of the internal scarring. Please do add me to the WhatsApp group you mentioned."
  • "Thank you for the sessions, they have been fab if a little tricky so far : ) I really value the opportunity for these sessions, thank you very much, they're very enjoyable."
  • "Thank you Arooj, it was so good to be guided by you to take care of ourselves a bit deeper than I would. Can't thank you enough to come to us new mums."
  • "Such a great class, so gentle and so needed. Thank you from the bottom of my heart. Everyday I feel grateful that I am able to practice with you, I feel fulfilled!"
  • "I enjoy the classes very much, especially when you correct my posture. Many thanks and see you on Zoom tomorrow!"
  • "I am grateful our paths met, I love your class and how you guide us new mums to not forget about ourselves and care for ourselves too."
  • "Wonderful class again today, I feel relaxed and nicely stretched. I am enjoying every minute of your class. Looking forward to next week already!"
  • "I am delighted we have been given the opportunity for another 6 classes!"
  • "The lower back stretch with the block is life changing! Thank you"
  • "I don't have the words to explain how good your classes make me feel"

Our Mums' Zone sessions add to the evidence of the positive effect of physical activity on the new mum's mental wellbeing.

Take a look at how much activity is recommended for new mothers and share our resource with advice, tips and activities.

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Bisham Abbey National Sports Centre, Marlow Road, Nr. Marlow, SL7 IRR