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C-Section - Ab Muscles

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CATHY_CRAM_MS
Posts: 9550
2/5/06 5:11 P

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Let me know if you have any questions about the exercises and how they feel for you!
Cathy


Catherine is the co-author of "Exercising Through Your Pregnancy" with Dr. James Clapp, and author of Fit Pregnancy For Dummies, published by Wiley Publishing in 2004. To learn more about these books or buy them online you can find them on www.amazon.com.

Cathy also provides Prenatal & Postpartum Fitness Information and certification courses to Healthcare Professionals. Click here to learn more.

CHOMPERSMOMMY
Posts: 2881
1/31/06 4:13 P

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This is exactly what I was looking for!!! I have always had that little pooch and my 3 c sections just seemed to make it worse... I am going to try these exercises tonight!!!


My Name is Crystal

William Martin born by c section Dec 31st, 2005
7lbs 12oz 19 1/2 inches long

Dakota-Rose age 6
Mikhala age 4

CATHY_CRAM_MS
Posts: 9550
1/29/06 1:13 A

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Suzanne,
The Sarhmann exercises are great at anytime prenatal or postpartum for strengthening abdominal muscles! You'll be amazed at how quickly your tummy, especially below the belly button starts to feel tighter and more supportive. Just remember to go slow, don't jump ahead to the next exercise too quickly and be patient. It takes time for your muscles to regain strength and adapt to the exercises.
Let me know how they work for you!
Cathy


Catherine is the co-author of "Exercising Through Your Pregnancy" with Dr. James Clapp, and author of Fit Pregnancy For Dummies, published by Wiley Publishing in 2004. To learn more about these books or buy them online you can find them on www.amazon.com.

Cathy also provides Prenatal & Postpartum Fitness Information and certification courses to Healthcare Professionals. Click here to learn more.

RACHEL_BABYFIT
Posts: 7145
1/26/06 2:14 P

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So glad they are helpful!! Cathy hooked us up with those!

BabyFit Community Team

" There is nothing like a newborn baby to renew your spirit - and to (strengthen) your resolve to make the world a better place."

-Virginia Kelley

"A child fills a place in your heart you never knew was empty"

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RACHEL_BABYFIT
Posts: 7145
1/26/06 11:17 A

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Hi Ladies,

Here are the illustrations and instructions for the Sahrmann exercises:

PP AB exercises (scroll down)

The url for future reference is:

http://babyfit.com/post-pregnanc
y-exercise-demos.asp
(scroll down the page)


Rachel


Suzanne, the exercises are great for everyone, PP (for pregnancy, they are modified a bit). Give them a try and I think you will quickly feel the exercises working on your abs.



Edited by: RACHEL_BABYFIT at: 1/29/2006 (15:08)

BabyFit Community Team

" There is nothing like a newborn baby to renew your spirit - and to (strengthen) your resolve to make the world a better place."

-Virginia Kelley

"A child fills a place in your heart you never knew was empty"

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MIXITMOM
Posts: 2961
1/25/06 11:16 A

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Cathy- Are the exercises still effective in tightening the muscles for those of us that are 6 months PP or farther?

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Suzanne



CATHY_CRAM_MS
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1/24/06 10:15 P

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Hi Sara,
Thanks for adding that post regarding PP abdominal exercises (and we're all looking forward to your baby's birth in just a few weeks!).
Just wanted to let everyone know that Babyfit will be featuring photos of the exercises soon, so you'll be able get a better idea of how to do each exercise.
The Sahrmann exercises are really effective and can tighten that tough to strengthen area right below the belly button. Just remember to do the exercises slowly, don't jump to the next exercise before your muscles are ready, and be consistant in doing the exercises at least 3 times a week.
Please let me know if you have any questions about the exercises-
Cathy


Catherine is the co-author of "Exercising Through Your Pregnancy" with Dr. James Clapp, and author of Fit Pregnancy For Dummies, published by Wiley Publishing in 2004. To learn more about these books or buy them online you can find them on www.amazon.com.

Cathy also provides Prenatal & Postpartum Fitness Information and certification courses to Healthcare Professionals. Click here to learn more.

SARA_PT
Posts: 739
1/24/06 7:35 P

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Here is a copy of an answer from Cathy Cram in the ask the expert section, I hope this helps!


For those of us who had babies over the last year, how can we get our flat tummies back?

The postpartum abdominal exercises I'm recommending take you through five levels. Traditional abdominal exercises, such as sit-ups, put too much stress on a postpartum tummy and back, and are not recommended for new moms. Instead, I recommend a series of exercises developed by Shirley Sahrmann, a physical therapist who specializes in abdominal rehabilitation. These exercises are designed to target the area most weakened by pregnancy—below the belly button—without creating stress on the back and abdomen. They're amazingly effective, but it's important for you to go slowly and master each level before moving on to the next one.

A C-section mom can start these exercises once the incision has healed (stitches are dissolved or taken out) and you don’t feel pain when contracting your tummy. If you had a vaginal birth you can get started once any incisions or tears are healed.

The first exercise to try is simply pulling your belly button in towards your back. Hold for five seconds and release. Keep breathing as you hold and try and work up to 5-10 of these contractions several times a day.

Basic breath: Lie on your back with your arms at your sides, knees bent, feet resting on the floor. Inhale and exhale a few times. Don't flatten your back or tilt your pelvis, just let the natural curve in your back remain. Breathe in slowly and deeply. Now, breathe out and tighten your tummy muscles, pulling your navel towards your spine.

Remember to concentrate on contracting the muscles below your belly button without flattening your back. When you are able to contract and relax your abdominal muscles without moving your back, you have learned to properly isolate the correct muscles. You can then try the first Sahrmann exercise.

Sahrmann Exercise #1
Lie on the floor with knees bent and arms at your side. Hold your tummy in by doing your basic breath contraction. Keeping one knee bent, slowly slide the opposite leg out until it is straight with the floor, and then slide it back up to bent knee position. Relax your tummy.

Repeat with the other leg. Remember not to flatten your back and to keep the curve of your spine relaxed. When your abdominal muscles are contracted it helps to stabilize your pelvis while your legs and lower tummy muscles work. This prevents strain in your back muscles, and trains your abdominal muscles to protect and support your spine. When you can comfortably do 20 legs slides on each side you are ready to move on to exercise #2.

Sahrmann Exercise #2
Lie on floor with knees bent and arms at your side. Pull in on your tummy and hold, then raise one knee towards your chest and slowly straighten it out parallel to the floor—about 2-3 inches above the floor without touching it. Return extended leg to starting position, knees bent, feet resting on floor, tummy relaxed.

Repeat on opposite side, keeping one knee bent as you extend the other leg. Work up to five repetitions on each side without stopping, building to 20 repetitions or more on each side before moving on to exercise #3.

Sahrmann Exercise #3
Use you basic breath as you bring your legs up one at a time towards your body with knees bent. Keep one leg bent as you slowly lower the other leg down to the floor and back up. Repeat on the opposite side, working up to ten times each leg before moving on.

Sahrmann Exercise #4
Use your basic breath as you bring both legs up, knees bent. Slowly extend one leg out, parallel with the floor but not touching it. Return the leg to the starting position and repeat with opposite leg. Work up to 10 repetitions each leg.

With each repetition remember to keep breathing, contract your tummy as you move, and don't let you back pop up. If the arch in your back keeps popping up during the exercise, then you're not strong enough to progress to this level, and need to go back to the previous exercise until you build greater strength.

When you can repeat this exercise 20 times on each leg without discomfort or arching your back, move on to exercise #5.

Sahrmann Exercise #5
Bring both legs to your chest using your basic breath one at a time. Straighten both legs up in the air, at a 90-degree angle from your hips. Keeping your legs together, slowly lower them down toward the floor. Only lower your legs as far as you feel comfortable doing so.

If you feel your back beginning to arch, bring your legs back up and lower legs again only as far as you can without arching the back. Work up to 20 repetitions.
If you notice back pain with this exercise, discontinue doing #5 and maintain at level #4.



Our first arrived February 6, 2006, what a blessing!! Abigail Susan Hambidge, she is truly a miracle!!!
KCUBAS10
Posts: 110
1/24/06 10:04 A

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I am in the same boat!!!

I had a c-section in October and lost all the baby weight, but I doubt my stomach will ever look the same. Diet, crunches, cardio... I tried everything... The skin around my belly button is still streched...

MIXITMOM
Posts: 2961
1/23/06 12:57 P

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I wish I could give you hope but I am in the same boat. I am 6 months PP and weigh 125 which is 5 pounds less than when I got pregnant. My lower tummy still has a small pooch that I cannot seem to get rid of. I have heard that it can take a good year for everything to go back to normal so I am keeping my fingers crossed. I do cardio and ab exercises on a pretty regular basis but I am thinking of trying pilates since that is supposed to be great for the core.

Good luck and let me know if you find something that helps.

BabyFit Community Team
Suzanne



LISAMARIE9
Posts: 17
1/23/06 4:27 A

 
 
I was wondering if anybody has managed to get back their ab muscles after having a C-Section?

I had my C-Section 3 months ago but I just cannot get back my ab muscles no matter how many ab exercises I do. My Obstetrician told me I'd always have some loose skin that will never go away.

Is this true??? Any success stories out there to give me hope?

Kind Regards
Lisa



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