Fitness and exercise with a stoma
We all like to indulge over the festive period but January is a good time to start getting in shape for the summer holidays.
If you have recently had stoma surgery it is important that you get back to a healthy lifestyle as soon as you feel able. Having a stoma doesn't mean you can’t exercise and keep fit. We have created some ostomy exercise tips below to get you started.
Walking is a good place to start for everyone and can be as slow or brisk as you wish. Go easy to begin with and build up slowly. When you’re fully recovered you can start to walk further and build up to a pace that suits you.
For contact sports, it is advisable to always wear a stoma shield to protect the stoma. For extra security you may wish to use clothing with a firmer waistband or a belt to help hold the pouch in place.
Yoga helps with posture, strength and flexibility which will all have been affected during surgery and recovery. It is also a great way to relax your mind and strengthen your core.
Swimming is a great form of gentle exercise to try once you are out of your initial recovery period. It is natural to have concerns about your appliance leaking or feeling self conscious in a swimsuit. There are smaller sized pouches available such as the Pelican mini sized pouches that some ostomates find more comfortable for swimming. Alternatively a colostomate may even be able to use a Pelican Select Minuet Stoma Cap or Stoma Cap Plus instead of their normal pouch.
You should talk to your stoma nurse about advice on how to avoid a hernia. Ways to avoid getting a hernia include gentle abdominal exercises and managing your weight. If you already have a hernia, an Eakin Support Belt may help you care for your hernia.