Date of Award


Document Type

Scholarly Project

Degree Name

Master of Occupational Therapy (MOT)


Occupational Therapy

First Advisor

Mandy Meyer


This scholarly project, Occupational Therapy for Pregnant Women: An Ergonomics Program for First-Time Mothers, provides occupational therapy practitioners with a 3-session group protocol to address ergonomic concerns of pregnancy and new motherhood with pregnant women who are becoming mothers for the first time. These ergonomic concerns are addressed as they specifically relate to the occupations of the clients. Through an extensive literature review, it was found that there is limited research and programming specific to occupational therapy’s role in providing services to pregnant women and new mothers. Ergonomic programming for pregnant women that was previously available did not address occupations and focused mostly on musculoskeletal issues of the upper extremity. These findings identified a need for an occupational therapy ergonomic program to address other body areas affected in pregnancy and the perinatal period and provide specific intervention for the occupations of the population. Such a program is important for preventing musculoskeletal disorders in pregnant women and new mothers, improving pregnancy outcomes, and lowering healthcare costs. The product, Ergonomics for Pregnant Women, was developed using information in the literature, gaps in existing programming, and the personal experience Dr. Mandy Meyer who served as the faculty advisor for this scholarly project and others who have experienced pregnancy and new motherhood. The creation of the product was guided by the Person-Environment-Occupation model and the Biopsychosocial frame of reference. The product addresses ergonomic considerations for the occupations of health management and maintenance, sleep and rest, breastfeeding and other baby care, community mobility, and leisure. The product also addresses routines and body areas other than the upper extremity, including the spine and hips to holistically approach each client and their experience of pregnancy and new motherhood.