LAKE CHARLES, LA (KPLC) - From fewer labor complications to dropping the baby weight, the benefits of fitness during and after pregnancy are enough to get many women moving. For the first time in Southwest Louisiana, there is a total body fitness program for moms and kids.
"Stroller Strides" is an outdoor 60-minute fitness program for moms with their children in the stroller. While 44 states currently have their own franchises, Stroller Strides Lake Charles is the first in the Louisiana. Co-owner and Instructor Jenni Trowell says, "Stroller Strides is a head-to-toe full body workout and really the best name for it is 'baby boot camp,' but we're nice about it."
Trowell and co-owner/instructor Courtney LeBlanc hit the outdoors each day to help other moms and moms-to-be up their fitness level during and after pregnancy. "We start off power-walking and we stop at stations and we do exercises at each station," says LeBlanc, "whether if it's with a stroller or exercise tubing."
The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists recommends that pregnant women do at least 30 minutes of moderate exercise each day. The exercise helps the mom's physical and mental state - and it also gives cardiac benefits to the unborn child.
Michelle Harp is the mom of one-year-old Ian. She says the socialization with other moms keeps her stroller striding three days a week. "You get to meet other moms and find out about the issues that they have," says Harp, "and you also get to meet other children and introduce your child to them."
There was another appeal for Elisha Privat who has 16-month-old Lyla and one more on the way. "I think a big part of it has to do with the fact that I really want my daughter to grow up being a part of an active lifestyle and hopefully she'll continue that as she gets older," says Privat.
The fitness routine is catered to each woman's needs - whether she's pregnant or post-labor and delivery. And leave the I-Pod at home! The little ones are involved in the workout through some kid-friendly songs. No matter your fitness level, LeBlanc says there's something for everyone. "Whether you're pregnant, whether you have knee pain, whether you really want to challenge yourself," she says, "we have exercise for everyone."
In addition to the Stroller Strides fitness program, there's also a mom's club offering weekly playgroups and monthly mom's night out events. If you want to learn more about Stroller Strides Lake Charles, click here.