Learn how to safely start postpartum ab exercises. Best tips and advice from a physical therapist on how to strengthen the core and improve your postpartum recovery.

postpartum workout plan




This post contains affiliate links. For more information, see my disclosures here.



Not sure how to begin fixing your abs after just having a baby? Why would you know how to fix them? Doctors aren’t teaching you, midwives don’t give you a printout of what exercises to do, and nurses send you home without explaining what the best way is to restore your core muscles after being pregnant for 280 days.

This is a big gaping hole in the pregnancy and postpartum medical departments in the US and worldwide. If you want to learn how to fix your abs and restore your core after it has been stretched out for 9 months of pregnancy, then continue reading to learn. 

Postpartum Recovery Is A Time To Recover


Postpartum recovery is no joke. It’s truly a time to recover after going through bodily trauma, childbirth. With your baby growing inside of you during pregnancy and then exiting the birth canal during childbirth, your body has to go through extreme changes to make this all happen.

For some moms, pregnancy and childbirth is a breeze, but for most moms, there are complications, pains, side effects and adverse reactions. All this to say, having a baby is not easy. It’s not easy on the mind or on the body. 

Related: 11 Natural Postpartum Recovery Tips For Faster Healing After Childbirth


Diastasis Recti After Pregnancy


When it comes to postpartum depression, a common diagnosis that is screened regularly in the medical field after childbirth, a mom is given a medical code called an ICD-10 code. When it comes to weakness in the core muscles after pregnancy, the diagnosis is called Diastasis Recti (DR).

Related: How To Test For Diastasis Recti After Pregnancy

Or if the weakness in the core doesn’t cause abdominal separation, but just generalized weakness, it would be listed in your medical chart as “muscle weakness”. Both DR and muscle weakness have ICD-10 codes that would be placed in your chart. However, the problem arises when neither the patient (aka -you!) or the doctor screen for these medical conditions after having a baby.

When Can I Start To Do Ab Workouts Postpartum?

Typically what happens is the baby is checked out thoroughly with an eye screening, hearing test, APGAR scale test and a slew of other pediatric tests, all of which I greatly appreciate.

But how often is the mom checked, given a total body exam, a physical of some sort before discharge from the hospital? Usually 6 weeks later, at the postpartum check-up, the doctor will do a thorough exam and give you clearances. 

But what the exam typically consists of is an internal exam. If you don’t know that DR is even a possible problem that may occur to your abs after having a baby, it’s easily missed by you, the mom, and the doctor. Rarely does a doctor examine your stomach for ab separation.

And muscle weakness, yeah, it’s a given that after having a baby you will be weak and flabby after pregnancy, but that doesn’t mean you have to be that way forever. It’s not as if you are forever doomed as a mom to have a postpartum pooch. 

What Ab Exercises Are Safe Postpartum?


If no one ever taught you or explained to you that your abs can be restored after pregnancy, how would you even know to try? Well, I want to tell you today if you haven’t heard it before, now’s the time to hear it!

Your abs can be restored after pregnancy. And the great news is… your abs can be FULLY restored after pregnancy.

It’s not hard, it’s actually quite simple.

It just takes the right training, the proper progression and the correct exercises to accomplish it.

There are definitely wrong ways at restoring your core after pregnancy, and this can lead to more problems, pain and a worsened diastasis recti condition.

But with the correct exercises taught by physical therapists, your core can be fixed, completely healed and work properly so that you feel like normal again.

Postpartum Core Strength

Your core is the most important area of your body; it’s what all other parts connect to in order to function and work properly. Without a strong core, your body will not work at its optimal level; other parts of your kinetic chain will begin to fail and pain will arise.

Don’t let pregnancy and motherhood take away your freedom of movement. Regain your strength again in your core, and live life with the strength and energy you once had pre-pregnancy.

Related: The Safest Postpartum Ab Workout Program For New Moms


How Do I Tone My Post Pregnancy Belly?


If you want to learn more about how to get started with postpartum ab exercises, you can join my FREE Live Workshop: Postpartum ABS 101: How To Safely Start Postpartum Ab Exercises where I, Dr. Jena Bradley, a physical therapist and mom of 4 will be teaching you my signature method to postpartum healing plus a whole lot more. We’ll finish with a Live Q&A, so come with questions ready. Join my FREE live workshop here and save your seat before all the spots are filled and they are filling quickly. 

This post contains affiliate links. For more information, see my disclosures here.

*It is important to always consult your doctor before beginning any exercise program and get medical clearance. Always warm up thoroughly and stretch after all workouts. LiveCoreStrong.com and Jena Bradley will be not be responsible or liable for any injury sustained while exercising at home, gym or elsewhere. Perform exercises at your own risk.

postpartum workout plan

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