Will My Abdominals Ever Be Normal Again After Giving Birth?
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Will My Abdominals Ever Be Normal After Having A Baby?

New Mum

Of course they CAN be, but we have to work at those abdominals after having a baby. 9 months of carrying those cuties and it takes work afterwards to get our bodies to a NEW NORMAL!

What happens during pregnancy?

  • Abdominals separate in the third trimester of pregnancy to make room for the baby to grow as big as they need
  • They separate along the middle of our body (linea alba) including along the belly button

What happens after pregnancy?

  • Abdominals need some attention to properly activate them, more specifically finding what we call the transversus abdominals
  • We need to make sure that we can focus on our transversus abdominals to help the muscle bellies come back together in the middle
  • This is important for supporting our lower backs and hips during our daily activities- lifting our little ones, walking, squatting, completing housework, etc.

How can I find the transversus abdominals?

  • Put your hands on your hip bones until you feel the hard bones on each side
  • Then put your fingers on the inside of those bones where it will feel mushy because you are touching muscle
  • Try to flatten your belly button towards your spine WITHOUT sucking everything in
  • You should feel like your upper abdominals are fairly relaxed when completing this exercise
  • Another hint is to have your hands on the muscles and say the word “Haaaa” out loud to feel the contraction of the transversus abdominals

What exercises should I avoid?

  • Planks, downward-dog, crunches and sit ups (all of these need to be completed properly under the supervision of a trained physical therapist who will check you to make sure this is appropriate for your level)
  • Make sure you are BREATHING when completing your abdominal exercises and any other exercises to prevent increased stress along your pelvis

Don’t be discouraged!!

  • Our bodies take time to recover after pregnancy just like it takes those 9 months to prepare for birthing our babies
  • Our bodies change in many ways in our abdominals, hips and pelvic floor (stay tuned for future blogs on this topic) during pregnancy
  • There are many systems out there to follow online, but it’s always best to work with a trained physical therapist where they can help you make sure exercises are being completed properly!

How can I get checked to see if I have a separation?

  • Come see one of our pelvic floor specialist physical therapists who are specifically trained in treating this condition
  • We will put together a program fit for YOU and meet you where your body is in the recovery process
  • We will look at the abdominals, hips and pelvic floor muscles to make sure that you get the best support around your pelvis
  • Our goal is to make sure you understand how to get your abdominals to work properly and be able to progress your program as you continue to get stronger
  • Call Breakaway Physical Therapy at 410-721-6333 to find out about our FREE phone consult or our FREE in-office Breakthrough visit to come meet us!

Just remember…you only get one body and although it changes a lot with pregnancy, these can be changes for the better! This is your time to make sure you are taking care of you as a MOM so that you can keep playing with those kiddos AND get back to doing all the things that you love!

Healthy kids DESERVE healthy Moms😊

Shaina Clemons

Shaina Clemons

Shaina is the founder and owner of Breakaway Physical Therapy.  She received her Doctorate of Physical Therapy from the University of Maryland Baltimore, along with a Bachelor's degree from Towson University.   Shaina is an Ironman triathlete, with a love of all sports. Exercise is her passion, which plays an important role in both her personal and professional life.  In her free time, Shaina enjoys spending time with her husband and three young children.  Shaina's love of snowboarding led her to her career choice many years ago. 
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