My name is Shauna Ironside and I am an osteopathic manual practitioner, athletic therapist and healthy mumma of three. I am located in Ottawa, Canada, where I work as a manual therapist helping people live a more mobile and physically healthy life.
I started Healthy Mumma after the birth of my first son while I was on maternity leave - nap times were plentiful, long and lonely. I needed an outlet. So he napped and I started sharing what I know about pre/post-natal health.
My passion for pre- and post-natal health grew naturally through my clinical work and along my own motherhood journey. Being a physical therapist with over a decade of clinical experience and a sound understanding of alignment, optimal movement, injuries and healing, I started writing about what worked and didn't work for me and my patients, what I know to be true and what "the research shows" in hopes that other healthy minded mummas might benefit - like you!
Pregnancy, Delivery, Motherhood.
These are the most physically stressing times of your life.
This is a pretty rotten statement, but it's so true and absolutely needs to be talked about. Pregnancy. Labour and delivery. Recovery. Motherhood. These ARE the most body (and mind!) stressing times of our lives. But we just don't talk about it. We aren't WARNED about it. We don't PREPARE for it. We don't PREVENT the injuries that come with it. And we are so MISGUIDED on how to fix the pains and dysfunctions that afflict us.
Some days are marathons, others are sprints -
you need to be equipped with the right tools to get through them all,
day after day.
every mumma knows there's no pause button.
I have no doubt that my pregnancies, intervention-free deliveries, and fast recoveries were largely due to my physical (and mental) prep for these stressful times. Okay, and a whole lotta luck! In a big way, I prepared for pregnancy, delivery and now motherhood like I would a sport event: stretch, align, strengthen, mental prep - they all apply to these seriously challenging years. I have avoided abdominal separation (diastasis recti abdominis), pelvic floor issues, and have returned to my ideal body weight and strength after my pregnancies. It can be done!
I marvel daily at the physicality that comes with parenting. There should be no secrets about how to get through these crazy years, pain-free, strong, empowered and educated to manage your body, and the physical demands that barrage it from the moment that you see that little blue + sign.
I truly believe that there is not enough focus on educating woman about the challenges that lay ahead with pregnancy and motherhood. It's all about baby. And once you are fully submerged in motherhood, there isn't enough relatable or reliable info on how to keep truckin' while STILL ACHIEVING YOUR PHYSICAL GOALS - be it regaining strength, finding new strength, losing weight, healing injuries, preventing injuries, etc. Whatever your goals are, wherever you are in this journey, I hope I can help - one healthy mumma to another.
I am the healthy mumma...
to three little people - one gentle souled kindergardener (Bennett - 5.5), one storm trooper (Hugh - 2.5), and one fresh out of the oven (Isla - 1 month). I am confident to say that I am now very well versed in trucks, farming machinery, aviation and space - happy to inform you on these hot topics any time, just ask.
I am also...
An osteopathic manual practitioner (what's that?) and an athletic therapist - all to say that I know a thing or two about the human body, movement and performance. I am recently back from maternity leave and happy to see local mummas, you can get in touch any time!
The wife of an incredibly talented photographer.
A proud Canuck, living and playing in Ottawa, Canada. I won't lie though, I often dream of living some place where it's not -30C in the winter. Southern France comes to mind - croissants, brie and wine are some of my best friends.
A swimmer. I would swim every day if could. Swimming is what keeps me healthy and sane, through pregnancies and beyond. I am also a runner, a skier and will do pretty much anything that keeps me moving, ideally outdoors - not difficult with two boys!
Very afraid (okay, petrified) of fish. Ironic, I know. I'll eat it, I just don't like swimming with it. When I lake swim (which is very often), I close my eyes the entire time and pray I don't have a run-in with a toothy scaly creature. It doesn't stop me from jumping in, because my love of swimming is so unavoidable, but it's a serious concern of mine.
A gym hater. I just can't do it (and what mumma has time for the gym?). I have a perfectly cute 25 lbs (baby) weight to haul around all day to keep me strong. You will find me doing exercises here, there and anywhere - park, backyard, playroom, laundry room. I try to make it to one or two FitMom classes a week. I take odd pleasure in finding fun ways to work out with the kids and their toys/gear!
A travel lover, a food lover and secretly think I could have gone to the Olympics for some kinda sport (swimming?) had my parents pushed me into just one, instead of the variety that I did growing up. I'm pretty sure everyone thinks this though ;) It's healthy.
Shauna's professional qualifications and work:
Osteopathic Manual Practitioner, D.O.M.P. Diploma of Osteopathy in Manual Practice from the Canadian College of Osteopathy, Toronto
Athletic Therapist, CAT(C), BSc. in Athletic Therapy from Concordia University, Montréal
Functional Movement Screen (FMS) Certified
McKenzie Institute: Part A (lumbar spine)
Running Specialist, The Running Clinic
Medical Team Therapist with Gymnastics Canada
Field work with national, provincial and collegiate level hockey, rugby, football, soccer, hockey, judo and triathlon
How to See Shauna in her clinical practice:
Shauna has over a decade of experience as a osteopathic manual practitioner and athletic therapist. She has a strong knowledge-base and special interest in functional movement, pre- and post-natal health and digestive issues. She has worked with a vast array of clientele from Olympic and Paralympic level athletes to newborns, and every body in between.
Shauna prides herself on a global approach to treating injuries and dysfunctions, empowering her patients through education and using exercise for a fast return to life, work and sport. She loves to educate and inform here on HealthyMumma and through her Prenatal Workshops.
What you already know, but needs to be said (aka the disclaimer):
Shauna is not a medical doctor. The purpose of this site is not to help you diagnose or treat a condition, nor is it intended to dispense medical advice. Although Shauna's professional background is in physical therapy, the purpose of this site is to share her thoughts, knowledge, opinions and experiences. The information, opinions, reviews, etc. are not intended to substitute medical advice. You should speak to your doctor or allied health care professional before attempting any of the exercises or incorporating any of the information provided on this site. You should also speak to your doctor with any health related concerns, and not rely on the information presented here, or anywhere on the web for that matter.