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During pregnancy moms get there core wrecked. There is no pretty way to say it and what is even worse is it never gets rehabilitated in most cases. With a weaker core the back suffers greatly, breathing is more labored because of poor posture and the core is eliminated hindering a mother's functionality. The core plays such a pivotal factor in everyday life. We are going to discuss seven exercises that will improve core fitness for moms and help have a flat tummy in the process.
Core fitness for moms is really crucial for reasons deeper than simply looking good. Moms who even have had one child have put their core through a change they even might not understand. Many suffer from diastasis recti and are unaware. All moms develop some time type of tearing within the abdominal wall leading to weaker less stable abdominal muscles, poor posture and less overall stability. Many never actually solve this problem and just think “well this is my new life, guess I have to deal with it.” That couldn’t be further from the truth and it doesn’t matter if it were a vaginal birth or a cesarean. The abdomen can be just as good as or better than it was before. We are going to go through 7 exercises that can aid in not only rehabilitating the core but giving it a nice flat look.
Belly breathing with Abdominal bracing: Core Fitness for Moms
Belly breathing is really helpful postpartum as is abdominal bracing. This helps the abdomen begin contracting again and even helps correct posture. It is a great core activation technique for moms who’ve already past this recovery phase.
Bird Dog: Core Fitness for Moms
This exercise will help strengthen core, hips and back muscles. It helps develop better posture and improve one’s mobility. No matter the fitness level this exercise can be utilized from beginners to elite athletes.
How to perform the exercises:
Dead Bug: Core Fitness for Moms
This exercise will help with the deeper inner abdominal muscles. Dead Bugs work the pelvic floor, transverse abdomen and erector spinae. To say these muscles took a beating during pregnancy would be an understatement and leaves moms with a real disadvantage if never rehabbed. How to perform:
These can be adjusted for more difficulty depending on level of fitness. Kettlebells, bands and stability balls can be used to increase difficulty. This exercise couples nicely with the bird dog to improve overall core fitness for moms.
Plank: Core Fitness for Moms
This is an exercise that many have used or heard of before. This is a great staple for core training in many capacities. These can be done daily, every other day or simply implemented into a strength training program already in place. The plank is another great stabilization exercise that allows for cinching the waist.
1. Begin in the plank position, face down with your forearms and toes on the floor. Your elbows are directly under your shoulders and your forearms are facing forward. Your head is relaxed and you should be looking at the floor.
2. Engage abdominal muscles, drawing your navel toward your spine. Keep your torso straight and rigid and your body in a straight line from your ears to your toes with no sagging or bending. Ensure your shoulders are down, not creeping up toward your ears. Your heels should be over the balls of your feet.
These can also be worked in different ways from the push up position to side planks. Start at 5 to 10 seconds and work your way up. As the above exercises beginners can utilize as well as those whom are advanced. Yet another exercise that can helps moms not only strengthen their core but get a desired look.
Yoga Boat: Core Fitness for Moms
This pose will further the progress achieved from those above and continue to help as core fitness continues to develop. Yoga boat will build core strength and hit the hip flexors that can easily be under utilized especially if there is a sedentary lifestyle involved.
How to do the pose:
Yoga boat can be used to warm up the core beforehand or simply used in a core routine. It can be utilized in many variations. For instance beginners can leave the feet on the floor while raising the hands and those who are more advanced can take the feet straight up and form a v shape. Core fitness for moms has a whole lot to do with stabilization and the ability to adapt especially playing with their children and the yoga boat will definitely prepare for that.
Scissor kicks & Flutter Kicks: Core Fitness for Moms
These exercises can add to a routine nicely especially an at home workout. Not only are the rectus abdominus, obliques and transverse abdomen being hit but the thighs will get a nice little burn in turn raising the heart rate. So not only are we getting a core workout but that elevated heart rate is helping us burn off some extra calories.
1. Lie on your back with your arms down by your sides.
2. Lift both of your legs a few inches off the ground and separate them slightly into a “V” shape. Engage your core and press your lower back into the floor.
3. Keeping both legs straight, bring your legs together and cross your right leg over the left. Widen your legs into a “V” again, and then bring your legs together again, this time crossing your left leg over the right.
4.Continue alternating until you’ve completed all reps.
5. Always keep your lower back pressed into the floor. If it starts to arch, lift your legs up to reduce tension on your core.
The mommy pooch or pouch that is left over can be tightened up over time by simply targeting the hip flexors. Working these helps flatten out the lower abdomen and remove that mommy pooch. With these two exercise incorporate into at home workouts whether it be total body or core and it will spike up that heart rate while getting rid of the mommy pooch.
Glute Bridge: Core Fitness for Moms
Although this exercise is used to shape the gluteus Maximus it’s also a great exercise to sprinkle in for your transverse abdomen. Whether that is a total body workout or a core workout it will help tighten up the core and as a plus the glutes will be shaped.
How to perform:
1. Lay down on your back with your knees bent and your feet flat on the ground. Your feet should be hip-width apart with your toes pointed straight ahead, and your heels should be about 6-8 inches away from your glutes. Place your arms by your sides with your palms turned up toward the ceiling.
2. Squeeze your glutes and your abs as you start to lift your hips toward the ceiling.
3. Raise your hips as high as you can go without arching your back. The goal is to raise your hips until your body is in a straight line from your knee to your hip and to your shoulder.
4. Squeeze the glutes as tightly as you can in the top position while you hold for two seconds.
5. Slowly lower the hips down to the floor, keeping tension in the glutes and abs as you lower down.
Glute bridges should be a permanent fixture in any program based off the benefits it provides help hit the posterior muscles as well as cinching the waist.
Moms take so much care of everyone around themselves and tend to neglect their own needs. Core fitness for moms is not one of those things to neglect with it being such a huge part of overall health. The exercises above will help provide a stronger inner core allowing the back to be strong and healthy. With those two coupled it will help with improved posture. As posture improves breathing, circulation and recovery will all be better. On top of that the waist will look great.
Not sure how to structure the plan try our 5 Day Core Challenge. Need further help check out our coaching options.