Postpartum physical activity and sleep levels in overweight, obese and normal-weight mothers

Shane Warehime, Danae Dinkel, Kailey Snyder, Jung Min Lee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Background Lack of physical activity and sleep can lead to serious health consequences. One population likely to experience both of these issues is postpartum mothers. Aim To compare physical activity and sleep of overweight/obese and normal weight postpartum mothers. Methods The study recruited 21 mothers in the first 6 months postpartum, who were classified as normal weight or overweight. Activity and sleep levels were gathered via wrist-worn accelerometers at three intervals between 36 months postpartum. Findings Overall, there was a significant (P<0.05) increase in physical activity. When separated by body mass index (BMI) classification, the normal weight group displayed a significant increase in physical activity, while the overweight/obese group did not. Normal-weight participants also had the larger increase in physical activity from visit two to three. All participants significantly decreased in sleep levels from visit two to three. Conclusions Discrepancies appeared between the physical activity of overweight/obese and normal-weight mothers. Interventions before and after pregnancy may be key in improving these issues.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)400-408
Number of pages9
JournalBritish Journal of Midwifery
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2018



  • Accelerometer
  • Physical activity
  • Postpartum
  • Sleep

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Maternity and Midwifery

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