Hab-it Exercises Forums Ask Tasha! Planks during pregnancy?

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    Hi Tasha,
    I am 28 weeks pregnant with our second child. I have seen various recommendations against full planks during pregnancy, but have not felt confident in the legitimacy of this recommendation. I’ve been doing your interval cardio workout lately as my belly has grown, but I’d like to do many of the exercises in full plank rather than on 2nd or 3rd stair. Currently this still feels ok and has not caused any back pain. If I am conscientious about keeping my lower back locked in a straight position, without any sagging, is there a reason to avoid full planks?
    I have a fairly mild prolapse since the birth of my first kid and no history of diastasis, if that is relevant.



    The lack of diastasis is relevant because a full plank with a diastasis present and that extra pressure on an already separated linia alba would not be recommended. Since you have no history of diastasis this becomes a question of you knowing your own body. If you can do the exercise without any breath hold or significant increase in intra-abdominal pressure – which means you can talk and maintain a steady breathing pattern, then you are probably safe, but I can’t give a huge thumbs up because the risk is far greater than the reward. Per your description, your sound as though you have a good base TA strength so I am not worried about your back health as much as I the soft tissue that is being stressed across the front of your abdomen.

    Recognize the stress that your growing uterus, baby, and fluid will place directly on your TA and the linea alba holding the two sides of your rectus together when you are in horizontal plank. Knowing this, is the added stress of a horizontal plank hold really worth it when you can significantly decrease this pull with your hands on the 2nd or 3rd stair. If you develop a diastasis – even a small one around the umbilicus, will you think that this exercise was worth it.

    I know I have total confidence in you getting your TA back in shape by maintaining a TA control throughout your pregnancy. Your recovery is based off keeping the neuromuscular connection primed and that can be accomplished through several different exercises that don’t stress the abdominal soft tissue as much as a horizontal plank.



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