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Please translate from medicalese and suggest exercises

BuelaBBuela Posts: 67
edited 06/11/2012 - 9:00 AM in Exercise and Rehab
One recommendation given in a study on SI joint issues in athletes was that "exercise techniques that promote independent contraction of the transverses abdominis."

First, precisely which are the transverses abdominis muscles? From what I'm seeing online, they're your lower back, but I'm trying to figure out where they precisely start and end, which way they run, etc.

What are some exercises that you might recommend that focus on strengthening those muscles? Of those, which would be the best ones to minimize neck strain?



  • SavageSavage United StatesPosts: 5,427
    Not sure, but I'm guessing your doctor gave you that information re' medicalese and exercises.

    It would probably be best to ask doc exactly what he means or if you're seeing physical therapist.

    Previously, my doc gave me a handout with pictures and explanation which was so helpful. It seemed like the exercise was to do exactly the opposite of what I would have thought, so I referred to handout often.

    Sorry I'm not much help, but best of luck to you and I hope the exercises are beneficial to you! :)
    Spine-Health Moderator
    Please read my medical history at: Medical History

  • Ok so what is TVA. It's just on layer of several in the area you call your abs.

    So there are multiple layers and focusing on the specific one is difficult and takes some work. Fortunately you can learn it and it's free :-)

    So here are some good example exercises.

    This is a good example with 5 stages. It teaches you how to isolate them. That is a key as most people think you just “suck in your gut” and “all” your abs are good. Not so. Pilates is actually a very good teacher of this.


    Here is an example of 2 that are popular. One is "planks" and the other is "superman". Superman is harder on your neck if you have cervical issues. It works very well but be careful. When lifting your head look further down the floor, not up. You're lifting your chest, not bending your neck. Lift your arms up with your palms facing in. Keep your elbow along side your ear.

    Link removed, solicitation not permitted
    Post Edited by Authority Member Liz

    Here's more samples:

    Transverse Abdominal Exercises
    • Plank Pose
    • Plank Pose Leg Lift
    • Plank Pose Twist
    • Transverse Pull Ins

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    Post Edited by Authority Member Liz

    • Back Extensions

    Ignore all the marketing and sales noise and just understand the exercises. You can do them daily or every other day. Start slow and easy and work up. Ignore any of the twisting ones if you are not allowed to twist.
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