I can't do ONE situp... post 3 c-sections. help?


11 Years
Aug 28, 2008
New England.. the cold part.
I've had 3 c-sections, and since the first, have been unable to do a situp. not in a 'wow, this is way too hard, and it hurts' way, but in a 'unable to fly either' kind of way. I can do a crunch, and leg lifts, which suggests that my abs are really there somewhere under the extra 30lbs, and I can do leg lifts well, and for a long time, and can do all the ab machine stuff at the gym that isn't actual sit ups. if I try to do a situp, i just stop moving after the crunch part, no matter what I do (unless I cheat and push up with my elbows or grab my legs and pull) i will not move. trying a situp in reverse (a sit down?) i run into the same thing, about halfway down, i just start falling, unless I grab my legs or support from the floor. like a nerve issue? any thoughts?

if i can't figure it out, I'm going to have to go to the doctor, no, it's not life or death (8 + years since my first c-section), but it is annoying.

I would look into doing pilates. Find a really good class that is not boring. [instructors vary widely] It is your core strength that you need to work on. Being able to do a sit up is the last thing accomplished, I think. I was doing pilates for awhile and it was the first 'exercise' that I could really tell a difference. [a lot of internal stuff just worked better /felt better] but I still could not do a sit up. I quit going for various reasons, but I know that when I'm ready, that will be the foundation of my regiment. [I have not had any c-sections, so I don't think that is necessarily the cause.] It may be that the extra 30lbs are just in the way. [might be the same for me too]

good luck to you!

Weird. It does sound sound like interrupted nerve innervation.

Not to worry....they are terrible for you anyway. My daughter is the PT sergeant for her unit and she said that eventually the Army will figure out that there are better ways to get good abdominal strength and not wreck your back.

Crunches are better for your back.
Go to a pool, The water offers support as well as resistance.
Put your back to the wall, hang on and curl up into a ball lifting your knees to your chest. It's the same range of motion as a situp but less stress.
When you get good at that, keep your legs straight, bend at 90deg, then bring the knees to the chest.
Don't just bend at the hips, curl up your whole waist. sort of curl up into a ball, clinging to the side of the pool.

For pool aerobics you can jog in place, jumping jacks, scissor kicks. etc...of you could swim...
X2 on the pilates and I would start with the legs and arms movements, that will start building up your abs until you can actually get the muscles working again. Take it slow and easy!

Good luck!
Mine too. I think I have adhesions, but no way to tell unless they open me up again. Pilates was a good suggestion. The exercises aren't jarring and are easy on the body. You'll definitely feel the burn, though. I'd still ask your doctor. Eight years out, you shouldn't have that big of an issue with the muscles.
Had one C-section and I can only sit up half way before I get the searing pain in the incisions. However the pool does help with the floating part!
If not in water, forget it.
There must be something to Yoga because I was flipping thru channels the other night and came across Two and a Half Men and the woman who plays the mother on there who HAS to be in her 60's was doing yoga moves that had me just astounded!!! Talk about flexible. I know she was doing it, not a double, because of the way the scene was set up. I am going to look for a good used beginning yoga DVD.

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