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Ongoing postpartum study at UFV needs more new moms

Moms will attend exercise programs online or in person for 12 weeks
Researchers at UFV are looking for new moms to participate in a 12-week study. (Pxhere)

More new moms in the Fraser Valley are needed for a postpartum study that focuses at least partly on self-compassion.

Researchers at the University of the Fraser Valley have started a multi-year project looking into postpartum physical and mental health. Twenty-five women have already taken part, said Dr. Iris Lesser, who is conducting the study with UFV’s Dr. Gillian Hatfield and Dr. Amanda Wurz.

The project helps new moms navigate some common postpartum issues, while studying the effect of different kinds of care. It’s a movement-based study, so participants join in an exercise class that involves a mixture of yoga, tai chi and pilates.

“We want to help women feel more connected to their bodies and feel better about themselves post-birth,” Lesser said, with a segment on photography and exploring visuals throughout the program.

Moms are divided into three groups, with one joining 12 weeks of in-person classes, one in online classes and a third that just is given information.

All participants will be given heart rate monitors at the outset of the study, and will be required to document some information.

The exercise program will by led by UFV’s Gillian Hatfield twice a week on the Chilliwack campus, and the study is open to those who have given birth in the past six months and who have been given clearance from their doctor to begin an exercise program.

They will be running the study in segments until they’ve studied 90 women. To learn more about the study or volunteer to sign up, email


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Jessica Peters

About the Author: Jessica Peters

I began my career in 1999, covering communities across the Fraser Valley ever since.
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