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Work Your Abs While You're Pregnant

It's very important to keep your abdominal muscles strong during pregnancy. This helps prevent you from getting diastasis recti, which is a separation of the abdominal muscles This is common during pregnancy. Regular abdominal exercise also reduces back pain by improving the alignment of your spine, makes your labor and delivery easier, and just helps you feel better overall.

Although you shouldn't exercise lying flat on your back after your first trimester, there are safe alternative ways to exercise your abs as your stomach grows. Here are four different exercises that you can safely do. Each exercise focuses on a different area of the abdominals. Complete all four to get a full ab workout.

 
  • Work Your Abs While You're Pregnant

    1 Side Crunch (Beginner)
    • Lie on your right side with your right leg slightly bent. Extend your right arm a little in front of you for stability. Bend your left elbow and place your left hand behind your head.
    • Bend your left knee and try to touch it to your left elbow. Lower your left leg down and repeat.
    • Do 25 times, then repeat on other side.
    2 Side Crunch (Advanced)
    • Lie on your right side with your right leg slightly bent. Extend your right arm a little in front of you for stability, or rest your right hand on your stomach. Bend your left elbow and place your left hand behind your head.
    • Raise your knees, left elbow and head straight up towards the ceiling. Hold this for one second, then release.
    • Do this 25 times, then repeat on other side.
    3 Basic Crunch
    • Stack 2-3 pillows so you can keep your head elevated above your heart when leaning on them.
    • Lean back with your knees facing the ceiling and feet flat on the floor. Place your hands together behind your head with your elbows out to the side.
    • Flex your abs, lifting your head and shoulders up towards the ceiling. Hold for one second, then release.
    • Do this 25 times.
    4 Reverse Crunch
    • Stack 2-3 pillows so you can keep your head elevated above your heart when leaning on them.
    • Lean back with your knees facing the ceiling and feet flat on the floor. Place your hands together behind your palms touching the back of your head.
    • Using your arms for stability, flex your lower abdominals and try to bring your knees towards your stomach. Hold for one second, then release.
    • Do this 25 times.

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