December 5, 2023 10:03 am

Jane Doe on returning to netball

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NETBALLHer posed three questions to an anonymous mum newly returned to the game

What impact has / did your pregnancy have on you and your netball?

Overall, I underestimated the impact my pregnancy would have. Since having my daughter I have struggled to get back my fitness levels; mostly in strength and explosive power. I don’t seem to have the rebound jumping skills I once did and while this is probably a hangover from being pregnant, I also haven’t had the energy to really focus on my game in the days since giving birth.

How did you feel about stepping back from netball?

I was sad to be stepping away and, to be honest, I felt jealous that my husband didn’t have to give up sports as I did. That said, I had experience of sitting out of netball after a 2018/19 ACL rupture.

But I completely underestimated the recovery, post-baby. I thought I’d be back on court a lot sooner than, in reality, my body and / or mind permitted. I kept playing walking netball until I was 38 weeks pregnant (practice only, no games) so to bridge the gap I rejoined that six weeks after giving birth. To ensure I stayed more connected I also took on a coaching role at my county club.

Is there anything you wish happened differently?

I wish I’d more understand of my body and the impact of playing postnatally. There are so many guidelines of what (not) to do when pregnant, but not a whole lot of guidance for post-pregnancy.

So I wish I’d had access to materials that allowed me to work towards full netball whilst recovering, fitness plans and so on, so I could have focussed my efforts in the right direction.

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