Physiologic and postural changes that occur during pregnancy and the postpartum period, combined with the physical demands of infant care, may place women at risk for musculoskeletal pain and musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs)
Preventing Musculoskeletal Pain in Mothers. Clinical Lactation, 2011, Vol. 2-4, 13-20

Returning to work after maternity leave can be a challenging transition for new mothers. Balancing the demands of work and motherhood often brings a range of physical and mental challenges. To support this transition, it’s crucial for employers to implement a comprehensive return-to-work programme that addresses these unique needs. One effective resource to include in this program is DocHQ Physio, which offers accessible, remote services tailored for post-maternity recovery.

The challenges of returning to work after maternity leave

New mothers often face several hurdles when returning to work, including:

Physical recovery: Childbirth can leave women dealing with a variety of physical issues such as weakened core muscles, back pain, and general fatigue.
Mental and emotional health: Adjusting to the dual role of mother and employee can be mentally taxing, leading to stress and anxiety.
Childcare arrangements: Managing childcare logistics while returning to work can add another layer of complexity to the transition.

Key components of a return-to-work programme

A successful return-to-work programme for new mothers should be supportive, flexible, and personalised. Here are some essential components:

  1. Personalised return plans
    Develop individualised return plans that consider each mother’s specific needs and circumstances. This might include part-time hours or remote working options to ease the transition back to full-time work.
  2. Flexible work arrangements
    Offering flexible work arrangements, such as remote work or adjustable hours, can help new mothers balance their responsibilities at home and work.
  3. Health and wellness support
    Providing access to health and wellness resources, including physiotherapy and mental health support, is crucial for a smooth return to work.

Leveraging DocHQ Physio

DocHQ Physio is an excellent resource to integrate into your return-to-work program, offering several benefits for new mothers:

Accessible, remote services
DocHQ Physio provides remote physiotherapy services that can be accessed from home. This eliminates the need for travel and makes it easier for new mothers to fit sessions into their schedules without arranging additional childcare.

Wide variety of exercises
With a library of over 1800 exercises, DocHQ Physio offers a comprehensive range of options tailored to individual needs. These exercises can help new mothers regain strength, improve flexibility, and address specific postpartum issues.

Consultation with a physiotherapist
New mothers can consult with a physiotherapist to receive a personalised plan that fits their specific needs and timeframe. This ensures that the exercises and recovery strategies are appropriate for their condition and goals.

AI-driven real-time feedback
DocHQ Physio uses AI-driven motion tracking technology that provides real-time corrective feedback on movement as the user performs their video-guided treatment plan. This feature ensures that new mothers perform exercises correctly and effectively, enhancing the sped of their recovery.

    Implementing the Program

    1. Initial assessment
      Conduct an initial assessment to understand each returning employee’s needs. This can include discussions about their recovery, identifying any specific accommodations they may require, and determining their readiness to return to work.
    2. Develop a support plan
      Based on the assessment, develop a support plan that includes:
    • A tailored work schedule
    • Access to DocHQ Physio for remote physiotherapy sessions
    • Regular check-ins to monitor progress and address any concerns
    1. Communication and training
      Ensure that managers and team members are aware of the return-to-work program and understand how to support returning employees. Training on empathy, flexibility, and the specific needs of new mothers is essential.
    2. Ongoing support and adjustments
      Regularly review the progress of returning employees and make any necessary adjustments to their work arrangements or support plans. Encourage open communication so employees feel comfortable sharing their needs and concerns.


    Creating a return-to-work program that supports employees returning from maternity leave is vital for their successful reintegration into the workplace. By leveraging resources like DocHQ Physio, employers can provide accessible, personalised support that helps new mothers feel valued and capable. With thoughtful planning and ongoing support, returning employees can thrive and contribute effectively to the organisation. DocHQ Physio offers a cost-effective and accessible option for recovery, making the transition back to work smoother and more manageable for new mothers.