pregnancy and fitness

PREGNANCY AND ABDOMINAL fitness

Pregnancy can in some cases cause the separation of the rectus abdominis muscles - also called abdominal diastasis - which occurs when the rectus abdominis on both left and right sides deviate from the midline of the body. The separation of these muscles is due to the weight of the child exerted on the abdominal wall, but also to the new hormonal balance which favors the thinning of the connective tissue (white line).

This separation can occur in the last trimester of pregnancy and is even more problematic after childbirth, when the abdominals are weakened.

Diastasis reduces the efficiency with which the abdominal muscles exert their stabilizing action on the trunk. It can make pain and instability in the back and pelvis worse. Its appearance during a previous pregnancy increases the likelihood of recurrence and potentially its severity during a subsequent pregnancy.

During the pregnancydirect lessons we take into account the conditions of each mother. The due date is particularly considered in order to perform the most appropriate and effective exercises possible.

Check with a simple test

 

This simple test, which you can do on your own, will help you figure out if there has been an abdominal muscle gap and how much it is.

  • Lie on your back with your knees bent and the soles of your feet flat on the floor
  • Place one hand behind your head and the other on your stomach, with your fingers on the midline of your body and parallel to the waistline, above the navel
  • With abs relaxed, lightly press your fingers against the abdominal wall
  • Lift your head and shoulders off the floor, with a crunch, making sure the chest is as close to the hips as possible
  • Move your fingers to the left and right sides, trying the walls of the right abdomen

To perform this test correctly, several precautions must be taken. For example, when you lift your head and shoulders by contracting the abdominal muscles, make sure not to force on the neck by avoiding bringing the chin closer to the sternum but on the contrary, keep a distance of at least a fist between your chin and sternum. The contraction should be designed to bring the rib cage close to the hip. When done correctly, the more the contraction increases and the more we see a reduction in the “hole”.

How to tell if there is a gap in the abdominal wall

Even if you have felt the “void” between your abs, don't panic! It is normal that a few weeks after birth, the connective tissue (white line) is a little relaxed. Day after day, we slowly recover the density and elasticity of before, and the little "hole" will become less and less deep and decrease by performing the appropriate and adapted exercises,

However, if

  • separation exceeds 2-3 fingers
  • it does not decrease despite a greater contraction of the abdominals
  • a small growth appears

it is then probably a separation of the abdominal muscles. It is imperative to take the necessary precautions when exercising, with an appropriate routine and after obtaining the consent of your doctor.

Movements to avoid

It is recommended to avoid all movements that strain the rectus abdominis, such as stretching exercises or other movements that take place during normal activities of daily living and which may extend the abdominal wall.

  • Rotational movements of the bust
  • Lie on your back on the fitball
  • All the traditional abdominal exercises that work your shallower abdomen and oblique crunches
  • Lift and carry heavy objects
  • Violent cough attacks

If immediately after pregnancy you have an allergic attack, the flu or a cold, it is recommended, before coughing, to put your hands on the stomach and, while coughing, to keep it compact, pressing the hands on the center of the stomach. abdomen, as if you wanted to join the two vertical abdominals. The objective of this maneuver is to avoid a worsening of the situation.

 

 

 

Where to start, what exercises

 

 

 

How to get back to the shape we had before pregnancy? اعراض الحمل الاكيدة First of all, we believe that it is important to start with exercises that aim to tone the muscle crossing the abdomen, the deepest abdominal muscle, which ensures the retention of the viscera. We will therefore have in the repertoire of exercises related to breathing that aim to compress the abdomen, bringing it as close as possible to the spine, giving the effect of an abdomen that implodes inwards and then withdraws. .

After restoring the tone and elasticity of this muscle, you can proceed to exercises which should include the more superficial abdominal muscles like the rectus abdominis muscles.

At first you can use an elastic band to help bring the uprights together during the contraction phase as you do a 'crunch', making sure your stomach is flat when you reach the peak of maximum intensity. It will not be particularly difficult if we have carried out the first lessons carefully and after gaining great control over the obliques. Breathing also plays an important role and you should combine it harmoniously with the contraction and relaxation phases to get the maximum benefit from your exercises.

In the meantime, we will continue to monitor the improvement of the rectus abdominis muscles. When we are ready, we can proceed in our routine by also including all the other abdominals to feel great once again!