How to flatten the stomach after a c-section

Updated April 17, 2017

Women who undergo a C-section might have a harder time flattening their stomach after the birth than do women who delivered vaginally. Because a caesarean section is considered major surgery, it is imperative that you wait until your scar is fully healed and your body has recuperated before you begin an exercise program. Consult with your doctor to make sure you are ready. In addition to doing stomach-tightening exercises, eat a healthy, balanced diet low in calories, and do aerobic exercise, such as jogging, walking or biking, to burn fat on your stomach.

Practice tightening your stomach muscles as soon as your baby is born. Remember to always keep your stomach in by moving your belly button toward your spine. This activates the abdominal muscles. Also, do pelvic floor exercises, also known as Kegel exercises, several times per day to tighten your pelvic floor muscles. Squeeze your pelvic floor muscles as if trying to stop urinating midstream and you have done a Kegel exercise.

Move on to gentle sit-ups once you have built some strength in your abdominal muscles. For best results, include abdominal exercises that target your stomach from all angles. Start with one set of eight to 12 repetitions of each exercise, and increase to two sets, then three, as you get stronger.

Work the lower part of your stomach with reverse crunches. Lie face up on the floor. Bring your legs toward your chest until your thighs are perpendicular to the floor and your lower legs parallel to the floor. Place your hands on your lower stomach and take a deep breath. As you exhale, squeeze your lower abdominal muscles until the bottom part of your body lifts off the floor. You should feel with your hands how your stomach is tightening. Bring your pelvis toward your chest, then lower back to the starting position.

Work the upper part of your stomach with modified crunches. On your back, keep your knees bent and your soles on the floor. Inhale deeply and press your lower back against the floor. As you exhale, tighten the muscles in your abdomen and bring your head toward your chest. Inhale as you lower yourself back to the starting position. As you get stronger, make sure your shoulder blades leave the floor as well.

Include scissor ab exercises to work your obliques. Your obliques are diagonal muscles that surround your waist and crisscross your stomach. Remain face up on the floor, place your hands at your ears, and extend your elbows to the sides. Position your knees in the reverse-crunch starting position. Move one knee toward your chest, while simultaneously twisting your upper body so your opposite elbow meets the raised knee. Straighten the other leg, then repeat on the other side.

Cite this Article A tool to create a citation to reference this article Cite this Article

About the Author

Julia Derek is a certified Manhattan-based trainer and writer. She has 14 years experience in the fitness industry. She works at Reebok Sports Club/NY or through her company Her writing has appeared in New York Post, Los Angeles Daily News, and AM/NY. She attended George Mason University.