BengKung Belly Binding – The physical, emotional, and spiritual benefits
BengKung Belly Binding is an ancient technique of wrapping the abdomen of a postpartum woman to warm the area and provide support during healing. At first, I thought the idea was a little odd especially since it’s not common in modern culture. The more I learned about BengKung belly binding, the more I became curious with how it worked, why someone would choose this over the easy velcro wraps available, and if it was right for me. I’ve found both pros and cons to this method of postpartum healing and would like to share those with you so you can see if BengKung belly binding is right for you.
For more information on cultural practices, how to wrap, and when you can start, visit this corresponding post.
– Pelvic Floor Support
During childbirth, the cervix opens approximately 10cm. Steady pressure on the hips helps the cervix and pelvic floor close and return to it’s pre-pregnancy size.
– Back Support
Lower back pain is a common complaint of new mothers, largely due to weak abdominal muscles and poor posture. Belly Binding is a great antidote to both of these causes.
– Diastasis Recti – During pregnancy, the two large bands of abdominal muscles can expand and separate. Separation usually lessens a few months postpartum, but can last for longer periods depending on the severity.
Belly Binding helps to tone the abdominal muscles by keeping the muscles in the proper places during healing and providing pressure to close the abdominal muscles. Belly Binding is likely not going to cure your diastasis recti, but is a great additional method of support and comfort to your healing body.
– Decreases postpartum bleeding time
Pressure and support for your uterus helps it contract and shrink to pregnancy size a little quicker, which also lessens your bleeding time.
– Posture – It is difficult (if not impossible) to slouch while properly bound. This can help with the common “nursing-slouch” that can lead to muscle aches and difficultly breastfeeding. Correct posture while breastfeeding leads to proper latch and decreased muscle tension.
– Modesty – Lifting your shirt and exposing your belly to feed your new little life can be difficult or uncomfortable for some women. Having a bind on can have the added benefit of providing a little more modesty while also providing great support. These come in all kinds of colors and patterns as well! I personally loved looking down and not seeing saggy, stretched skin and muscles but a beautiful wrap honoring my postpartum body and holding it firm and warm while I healed.
– Taking the time each day to care for yourself, recognizing that the postpartum mother is just as important as your new little life, and wrapping yourself with the comfort and care that you deserve is a valuable addition to your daily routine. Enjoy the excuse to take some time and listen to what your healing body is telling you it needs while your warmly wrap an area with love that has worked so hard for you and your baby.
– Positive Self Image – Using beautiful fabric to wrap your healing body not only looks great, but feels great too. When you feel good and supported, you feel better about yourself in general. Happy moms lead to happy babies.
– Postpartum wrapping helps slim your ribs, hips, and abdomen by holding them in place and guiding them back to together as they heal. While it’s not a waist trainer or binder made to really slim you down, I noticed a difference when I had been wearing my wrap and when I hadn’t. Things looked tighter, firmer, and healthier for days after I’d taken the time to care for my body.
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Benefits of the BengKung wrapping style include:
– Complete customization – Since this wrap is, in it’s simplicity a piece of fabric, you can wrap it to fit your unique body type. They are one size fits most, but you can get a longer or shorter one if you feel you need it AND they are so pretty! You can get one in any color, style, or even dye your own!
– Only one size needed – As your healing postpartum body changes, this wrap will change with you. You’ll never need to buy a different size once you’ve got your wrap, simply keep wrapping and adjust it to your changing shape, comfort, and goals.
– This wrap covers the area from just under the breasts all the way down past the hips for maximum support throughout the entire abdomen which you won’t find with other popular wraps on the market. This wrap can also be wrapped as tightly or loose as is comfortable to you, without having all that velcro poking, pinching, and digging into you.
– This technique is easy to learn and once your have a wrap and the knowledge of how to use it, there’s no need for additional $$! You can make your own wraps and warming belly paste yourself (if needed) so you can keep wrapping yourself as long as you want. 🙂
Cons of BengKung Belly Binding
During my experience with this technique and from feedback from clients, there are a few cons of BengKung Belly binding but in my opinion they are minor compared to the benefits.
– It does take a little more time to put on compared to the quick velcro postpartum binds on the market (about 10 minutes at first), but even after just 3-4 times of binding I can do it in less than 5 minutes now. I really did not like the velcro postpartum bind as they were uncomfortable and just squeezed me right in the middle of my waist, providing no support for my hips and lower abdomen. The time it takes to wrap could also be considered a pro, as listed above, because I do enjoy the alone time and special attention I can give myself pondering and observing on how I’m feeling that day. Life with a newborn does make it difficult some days to even find 5-10 minutes alone, so I gave myself a little grace those days and planned to wrap myself the following day.
– You really can’t machine wash this bind. I mean you can, but think about 16 yards of fabric after even a gentle wash cycle. Hand washing is the preferred method if your wrap starts to smell or gets excessively dirty, but I’ve only done this once. Any time I use warming herbs or essential oils, I always put a barrier between myself and the wrap.
I really love the support of BengKung belly binds and the symbolism behind the practice, but I have also been impressed with the physical benefits I have received and the positive feedback from clients that have also used this technique. If you want more information on making your own bind you can watch my tutorial video!
Don’t forget to follow me on Pinterest for more belly binding updates and tips for postpartum healing. Take the time for yourself, you won’t regret it.
~ All things for you and your new little life ~