If you know any new moms and are wondering what they might like for Mother’s Day this Sunday, keep in mind that research shows mothers of infants and toddlers have less time for leisure and physical activities than the rest of the population. That can affect not only their physical health but their mental well-being too.

Today in The Conversation Canada, Dawn Trussell and Jennifer Mooradian of Brock University and Shannon Hebblethwaite and Stephanie Paterson of Concordia University look at the expectations and realities new mothers face when trying to return to leisure and physical activities. The women they encountered in their research were trying to overcome physical challenges, time constraints and socio-economic barriers to seek activities that helped them address stress, anxiety and self-esteem issues and also helped them navigate their new identity as a mother.

There is a role for families and partners in helping them access these activities. As a Mother’s Day gift, the payoff is substantial: “The women’s participation gave them a sense of freedom and control over their lives.”

Also today:

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All the best.

Patricia Nicholson

Health + Medicine Editor

The gift of sleep, time, self-care (“me time”) and a message of what a remarkable job she is doing may be what new mothers need most this Mother’s Day. (Shutterstock)

This Mother’s Day, help new moms return to exercise and leisure to support their physical and mental health

Dawn Trussell, Brock University; Jennifer Mooradian, Brock University; Shannon Hebblethwaite, Concordia University; Stephanie Paterson, Concordia University

Mothers with young children are consistently identified as having lower levels of physical activity and leisure opportunities, which place their physical and mental health at risk.

Québec Premier François Legault defended Bill 96 saying he doesn’t want the province to become Louisiana. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ryan Remiorz

Bill 96 will harm Indigenous people in Québec. We need more equitable language laws

Richard Budgell, McGill University

For most Québec residents, there is broad consensus that French should be protected. But many of us believe that multilingualism need not threaten French.

An inmate can be seen inside a segregation cell at the Collins Bay Institution in Kingston, Ont., in 2016. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Lars Hagberg

How prisons are using COVID-19 containment measures as a guise for torture

Jessica Evans, Toronto Metropolitan University; Linda Mussell, L’Université d’Ottawa/University of Ottawa

Solitary confinement is still a common feature of prisons across Canada and in its most populous province, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic. It’s a practice that amounts to torture.

Amazon has historically opposed trade union recognition by engaging in union suppression practices, like resisting trade union recognition through coercion. (Shutterstock)

If Amazon wants to be the ‘Earth’s best employer’ it needs to listen to employees

Geraint Harvey, Western University

Amazon can become the Earth’s best employer, but this must involve democratizing the workplace, recognizing the legitimate right of employees to organize and cooperating with labour representatives.

The Julian Sreet Inn, Shelter for the Homeless, in San Jose, Calif., designed by Christopher Alexander. (David Ing/Flickr)

Architect Christopher Alexander mined mathematics to find patterns for good living

Theodora Vardouli, McGill University

Architect Christopher Alexander’s work will continue to be important not only for designing buildings but also in light of contemporary debates about how data always comes from specific settings.

An increasing number of people are falling victim to cryptocurrency scams on dating websites. (Shutterstock)

To keep people — and their money — safe online, regulate dating platforms

Carlo Handy Charles, McMaster University

Online dating scams are costing site users millions of dollars. Regulation needs to hold companies accountable for fraud committed on their platforms.

La Conversation Canada

Des bénévoles placent des denrées alimentaires dans des boîtes, à Moisson Montréal, le 7 décembre 2019. Les fondations philanthropiques détiennent d'importants capitaux et il est essentiel qu'ils les investissement pour remplir leurs missions. La Presse canadienne/Graham Hughes

Les fondations philanthropiques sont riches, mais dépensent peu. Les nouvelles règles pourraient changer la donne

Diane Alalouf-Hall, Université du Québec à Montréal (UQAM); David Grant-Poitras, Université du Québec à Montréal (UQAM); Jean-Marc Fontan, Université du Québec à Montréal (UQAM)

Les fondations accumulent de la richesse. Or, la philanthropie ne doit pas être une entreprise privée vouée à générer et à s’accaparer l’argent. Elle doit agir sur les grands enjeux d’inégalités.

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