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Why The Tummy Team?

Are you struggling with
effective treatment plans for…

The Tummy Team approach could be the missing link in your practice.

Let’s rethink what we know and reconsider what we do to help our clients relieve their pain and dysfunction.

 

See how The Tummy Team approaches treatment in the following areas:

Rethink Functional Core Weakness

Defined: The inability of the muscles of the core to effectively function and support the body for everyday physical demands without pain or dysfunction.

Possible Presentations:

  • Collapsed postures
  • Diastasis recti
  • Low back pain, mid back pain
  • Sacroiliac Instability
  • Pubic Symphysis Pain
  • Sciatica
  • Pelvic Floor issues
  • Constipation/GI issues

 

Rethink Functional Core Strength: We need to rethink how we train the core starting at the functional use of the internal corset muscle - the transverse abdominis. The Transverse is the only muscle in the body that wraps around the torso and provide all-day postural and respiratory support in upright postures.  Without the daily function of this muscle and the muscles it reconnects to, the body is forced to use less than optimal compensation strategies that lead to overuse, pain and muscle imbalance.

The Missing Link: Functional Core Weakness, and the symptoms related to, it is an epidemic in our culture but is also effectively treated. Retraining the transverse with upright, elongated and connected techniques eliminates the need for compensation so the body achieves balance and pain resolves. Reintroducing this foundational strength into function, fitness and all day postures create lasting strategies for life-long functional core strength.

Rethink Diastasis Recti

Defined: The medial separation of the abdominal wall due to the overstretching of the linea alba.

Possible Presentations:

  • Collapsed postures
  • Diastasis recti
  • Low back pain, mid back pain
  • Pelvic instability (SI joint, pubic symphysis or dysfunction)
  • Sciatica
  • Pelvic Floor issues
  • Constipation/GI issues

 

Rethink Diastasis Recti: Diastasis Recti is extremely common, underdiagnosed and typically left untreated. Why? Traditional physical therapy and surgical procedures have not been effective. Medical professionals do not like to look for conditions that they do not have options to treat. As a result, clients are often not diagnosed. Or, clients are diagnosed and given very outdated and contradicting information.

The Missing Link: Functional Core Rehabilitation is an effective treatment for diastasis recti and the functional core weakness that is always connected to it.  The Tummy Team has helped thousands of clients close their diastasis, rebuild their core and regain their active lifestyle. Understanding how optimal alignment, neuromuscular re-education, and functional integration combine to heal the internal core is key to changing how this condition is being treated worldwide.

Rethink Prenatal Functional Core Weakness

Defined: The inability of the muscles of the core to effectively support the optimal mother and fetal alignment and functional strength required for a pain-free stable pregnancy, an uncomplicated delivery, and a speedy birth recovery.

Possible Presentations:

  • Low back pain
  • Pelvic instability (SI joint, pubic symphysis or dysfunction)
  • Poor fetal alignment
  • Diastasis recti
  • Traumatic previous births
  • Difficult pushing phase in previous births
  • Prolonged birth recovery in previous births
  • Pelvic floor weakness

 

Rethink Prenatal Functional Strength
Pregnancy increases the risk of diastasis due to:

  • The continuous forward forceful pressure of the growing uterus on the linea alba
  • An increase in relaxin, progesterone, and estrogen in pregnancy that creates increase elasticity in the linea alba
  • Poor posture and internal core strength prior to pregnancy that is accentuated throughout the pregnancy
  • Poor compensation strategies of bracing, bulging and bearing down with lifting, bowel movements, and getting in and out of bed and in and out of deep chairs.

 

The Impact of Diastasis Recti and Functional Core Weakness on Pregnancy

  • Increases compensation strategies in the pelvis, resulting in low back pain, pelvic instability, and pelvic/hip pain.
  • Reinforces a collapsed posture and poor fetal alignment
  • Creates excessive pressure in the pelvic floor and impacts the connection coordination required for delivery
  • Can lead to pain in pregnancy, difficulties in labor and a challenging delivery and birth recovery.

 

The Missing Link: We need to reconsider how we treat prenatal women. Instead of simply treating the aches and pains of pregnancy, The Tummy Team proactively focuses on reconnecting and retraining the core and pelvic floor muscles necessary to best support the growing uterus throughout the pregnancy. Then we work on the creating a neutral pelvis/neutral rib cage alignment and combine it with the postural endurance required to support optimal fetal alignment. We build on this alignment by focusing on the connection, coordination and disassociation between the core and pelvic floor muscles to foster the connection required for pushing a baby out without excessive breath holding and detrimental bearing down. Finally, we provide new mothers with the tools to rehabilitate their core and pelvic floor for a holistic birth recovery, while providing support and strength for the physical demands of newborn care.

Abdominal Surgery Prehab and Rehab

Defined: Any surgical procedure that requires an incision through the muscles of the core requires proactive connection exercises and post-surgical rehab.

Possible Surgeries:

  • Cesarean section
  • Hysterectomy
  • Hernia surgery
  • Bowel resection
  • Appendectomy
  • Other abdominal surgeries

 

Rethink How We Approach the Abdominals: If the core muscles are key to how our bodies function all day every day, then why do we not provide rehabilitation for abdominal surgeries like we do for surgeries on the hip, knee, shoulder or hand?

The Missing Link: The Tummy Team focuses on retraining the muscles of the core and neutral active posture alignments prior to surgery whenever possible. Often muscle disconnect due to pain or longstanding muscle imbalance can make post-surgical recovery difficult. When we work on reconnecting and rebuilding the core prior to surgery we can create muscle memory that dramatically accelerates the post-surgical rehab process.

However abdominal prehab is not always an option. When preparation for abdominal surgery is not an option, we still see a huge benefit in abdominal rehab post surgery to retrain and regain the full function of the core muscles.

Functional Pelvic Floor Weakness

Defined: The inability of the muscles of the pelvic floor to effectively function and support the pelvic organs and pelvis for everyday physical demands without pain or dysfunction.

Possible Presentations:

  • Stress incontinence, urge incontinence, mixed incontinence (bladder or bowel)
  • Constipation or difficulty emptying bowels
  • Prolapse (rectocele, cystocele, uterine, heaviness or bulging sensation in vaginal area)
  • Pelvic instability (SI joint, pubic bone pain, pubic symphysis disorder, coccyx pain)
  • Pain with intimacy
  • Deep low back pain, vaginal pain or rectal pain

 

Rethink Functional Pelvic Floor Strength: Our culture has mistakenly believed that it is normal to wet your pants involuntarily after having a baby or two. Simply prescribing Kegels is ineffective. Pelvic organ prolapse has become increasingly common in postpartum women and in women who have never had children. Thankfully, pelvic floor rehabilitation is becoming more common and more available however how we are treating pelvic floor conditions like prolapse, stress incontinence, constipation, pelvic pain and pain with intimacy seems to be lacking something.

The Missing Link: The Tummy Team includes the functional component that often is missing when simply offering internal pelvic floor work. The pelvic floor muscles are the floor of your core and are also primarily postural and respiratory in nature. We prioritize neutral pelvic alignment and functional core strength when addressing pelvic floor dysfunction and then educate and reinforce the meaningful connection to the pelvic floor in all our client's daily activities.

Tummy-Safe Fitness

Defined: Exercise that promotes neutral alignment and consistent activation of the internal core while avoiding bulging, bracing or tenting of the abdominal wall.

Possible Presentations of Poor Fitness Choices:

  • Crunches/sit-ups/crossover crunches and crunch like exercises
  • Powering through pain
  • Straining, bracing, bulging or breath holding to perform an exercise
  • Exercise that creates abdominal tenting or bulging
  • Exercise that promotes posterior pelvic tilt, anterior pelvic tilt or rib flaring for stability
  • Exercise that causes bulging, pressure or leaking in the pelvic floor

 

Rethink How We Exercise the Core: Fitness enthusiasts invented crunches in the 70’s and 80’s as an attempt to strengthen the abdominal muscles. The theory is that when you shorten a muscle (pulling your lower and upper portions of the abdominals together), you strengthen the muscle. Other similar exercises like sit-ups, v-sits, Pilates, etc. were also invented in an attempt to strengthen the abdominal muscles. The problem with this theory is that the abdominal muscles are unlike other muscles in the body. Connective tissue runs down the center of the abdominal wall, and connective tissue responds quite differently than muscle. Instead of tightening when the muscle flexes, the connective tissue stretches and eventually bulges, damaging the core and leading to back pain, muscle imbalance, and internal organ issues.

The Connective Tissue Issue: Every time we do a crunch, we put forward, forceful pressure on the linea alba. The stress that the crunch puts on the muscle causes the top and bottom portions of the muscle to shorten, but the middle portion to separate, or bulge. At first, it creates micro-tears in the connective tissue, but over time and with increasing intensity and strain, crunches can lead to diastasis recti.

The Missing Link: The Tummy Team considers the true functional design of the transverse abdominis. It stabilizes the spine, supports the organs, assists with posture and allows the rest of our body to function effectively. The core is used when we lift, reach, jump, carry, bend and do just about everything. When the transverse abdominis is the foundation of core strength, all of the other muscles are placed in a position of balance and optimal function.

Our bodies were designed to spend most of their time in upright positions – standing, walking and being active with our entire core and back engaged and stable. In order to work the recti from the middle, we need to work the transverse muscle, but not with traditional ab exercises. The Tummy Team begins with daily functional core strength activities and then transitions clients into Tummy-Safe fitness where every exercise will reinforce and increase true core strength.