Can I do abdominal exercises while pregnant?
So you may still be wondering, can I do abdominal exercises while pregnant?
Core training is actually one of the most important things you can do for your health during pregnancy.
In fact, there is a much greater demand on your core as your bump grows. Therefore, it’s so important to maintain core strength throughout the pregnancy. Stronger abs will also aid in labor, delivery and recovery.
There is a very specific set of ab exercises you shouldn't be doing after the first trimester and those are supine flexion core exercises.
Here’s the deal:
AVOID working on your rectus abdominis; your 6 pack muscles. Pregnant women are advised not do CRUNCHES or RUSSIAN TWIST after the first trimester because of the pressure these movements place on the abdominal wall causing excessive abdominal wall separation.
DO work on transverse abdominis (TVA), which is the muscle that wraps around your core and act as a corset. This is the most important muscle group to work during pregnancy.
Cues to activate TVA:
✅ Make the “sh” sound or
✅ Think about zipping up a tight pair of jeans
The linea alba is what connects your 6 pack, which stretches during pregnancy to accommodate the growing fetus (causing Diastasis Recti), but stronger TVA that wraps around your core can minimize the damage to that structure.
Consult your practitioner before initiating any exercise program during your pregnancy. All core strengthening exercises should be managed on a personal basis, depending on your existing core strength and ability to control intra-abdominal pressure. Give us a call and schedule a consultation to learn about exercises you can do during your pregnancy safely.