Engaging in physical activity and breastfeeding are 2 of the healthiest behaviors a new mother can participate in, yet a majority of mothers are not achieving physical activity or breastfeeding recommendations. Breastfeeding mothers may experience additional barriers to physical activity; however, more research is needed. The purpose of this cross-sectional study was to determine the physical activity levels of breastfeeding women as well as to better understand their motivation and barriers for engaging in physical activity.
In this cross-sectional study, the authors investigate the following questions as related to breastfeeding and perceptions of physical activity.
- What is the physical activity frequency and type for women that are breastfeeding?
- What motivation (intrinsic/extrinsic) do women have for participating in physical activity while breastfeeding?
- What barriers exist that prevent women from meeting physical activity recommendations when breastfeeding?
- How do these barriers to physical activity and differences in motivation relate to the Self-Determination Theory?
- What can providers do to support and encourage physical activity in breastfeeding mothers?
Read the Research Report to learn more about how the Self-Determination Theory can influence physical activity levels in women that are breastfeeding.