Pregnancy and Postpartum Physical Therapy Course
This live two-day course will teach participants how to appropriately treat and manage the female athlete from preconception to postpartum return to sport.
There are more females pushing the boundaries of sport through motherhood. Female athletes are wanting to continue to participate in and return to sport after baby. As clinicians, we need to understand the needs of these athletes and help empower them to return to sport whenever they wish to.
This course will be structured in lectures and labs that will teach you basic internal intra-vaginal techniques to guide your plan of care, pelvic floor anatomy, common pelvic floor issues in female athletics, coaching for the female athlete with or without pelvic floor dysfunction and planning treatment to get them back to the sport they love!
This course is usually held in a gym, although occasionally Day 1 is held inside a traditional physical therapy clinic & Day 2 inside a gym. These facilities may not be co-located and may require a short drive (5-15 minutes) on Day 2.
8:00am - 9:30am
Lecture: Introduction to Pelvic Floor Dysfunction
9:30am - 10:30am
Lecture: Pelvic Floor Assessment
10:30am - 12:30pm
Lab: Pelvic floor internal and external exam
12:30pm - 1:00pm
1:00pm - 2:00pm
2:00pm - 3:00pm
Lecture: The Female Athlete
3:30pm - 4:00pm
Lecture / Lab: Pelvic Girdle Pain in Pregnancy
4:00pm - 5:00pm
Lecture / Lab: Birth 101 and the Fourth Trimester
Be About it
8:00am - 8:15am
Recap Day 1
8:15am - 9:30am
Exercise Modifications in Pregnancy
10:30am - 11:00am
Diastasis recti assessment
11:00am - 12:30pm
Lab: Return to postpartum gymnastics
12:30pm - 1:30pm
1:30pm - 2:00pm
Lecture: Return to barbell training
2:00pm - 3:00pm
Lab: Barbell concepts with pelvic floor considerations
3:00pm - 3:30pm
Lecture: Return to endurance
3:30pm - 4:30pm
Lab: Readiness for return to endurance
Unique Considerations for the Female Athlete & Pelvic Floor Physical Therapy
Be able to differentiate performance differences between sexes and recognize how the menstrual cycle may influence training parameters for female athletes.
To be able to identify when a female may be experiencing Relative Energy Deficiency in Sport (REDS) in order to refer to the appropriate provider.
Intro to the Pelvic Floor Exam
- Be confident in the ability to perform a thorough subjective assessment to highlight key information relevant to the female athlete and pelvic floor issues.
- To be able to landmark and assess the tone of the pelvic floor externally.
Intro to Pelvic Floor Dysfunction
- Be able to recognize the signs and symptoms of common pelvic floor dysfunctions
The internal supine and standing Pelvic Exam
- Document and perform appropriate consent, draping and sterile fields consistent with the regulations for performing internal pelvic floor assessment
- Assess for muscular strength of the pelvic floor and teach appropriate pelvic floor contractions and relaxation strategies
Pregnancy Physiology & Exercise Considerations for Pregnancy
- Recognize the changes that occur during pregnancy that may influence the musculoskeletal system
- Assess if a female is safe and able to exercise during pregnancy
Lab: Exercise Modifications for Pregnancy
- Demonstrate appropriate modifications based on symptoms and physiology in relation to barbell, endurance and gymnastics-based movements.
Pelvic Girdle Pain
- Demonstrate techniques to clear for lumbar spine and hip involvement during pregnancy
- Be able to objectively evaluate a female with pelvic pain using a combination of orthopedic tests.
Beginner Pelvic Floor & Core Rehab
- Be able to educate and prescribe early pelvic rehabilitation exercises
- Give appropriate progressions for early postpartum rehabilitation
- Evaluate diastasis recti for persons who are pregnant or postpartum and make appropriate goals and treatment plans for individuals presenting with diastasis recti.
Return to Gymnastics Postpartum
- Demonstrate the proper biomechanics for common gymnastics movements including the kipping pull-up and toes to bar.
- Prescribe the appropriate progressions for returning to CrossFit gymnastics movements from early postpartum to full return to sport.
Return to Barbell Training Postpartum
- Describe the evidence on breathing mechanics and pelvic floor strength and support
- Describe when it is appropriate to return to using Valsalva and weightlifting belts
Lab: Concepts in Barbell Training
- Be able to modify barbell movements for tolerance to impact, load and symptoms of pelvic floor dysfunction.
Return to Endurance Postpartum
- Describe the evidence for returning to endurance-based exercises
- Evaluate readiness to return to endurance-based sport.
Lab: Returning to Endurance Exercise
- Create progressions for returning a female athlete to running, double unders and metabolic conditioning postpartum with or without pelvic floor issues
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Is there internal examination and treatment in this course?
There is a 2 hour block of internal examination during the morning of Day 1 (Saturday).
Is internal work required?
The internal portion of this course is not mandatory. If you want to receive CEU credit, you must either:
A) "Bring a vulva" to the course (family member, friend, colleague, etc.) to perform internal work on in place of yourself or perform the alternative assignment. This applies to you whether you own a penis or a vulva but do not wish to have your vulva examined.
B) Participate in an alternative assignment: leave class during the internal block of instruction to watch a video lecture & pass a quiz.
What privacy measures do you use during this course?
We utilize sheets for draping during the internal portion of this course for modesty. In addition, we block off any windows and ensure all doors/points of entry are locked. If the facility has cameras, we tape over the cameras during the internal portion of the course.
What if I am currently menstruating during the course?
That's ok! You are still able to fully participate in this course. We utilize gloves and other sanitary procedures to ensure that this will not be a limiting factor.
- Physical therapists
- Occupational therapists