Hypopressive gymnastics consists of performing a maximum exhalation and then you must try to ‘suck’ the abdomen all the way in, without breathing and maintaining this maximum contraction. This movement improves bowel function, sharpens the waist and improves posture by fighting back pain and postural imbalances.
The hypopressive method was created in the 70s and has gained space in gyms and rehabilitation clinics because in addition to strengthening the abdominal and back muscles it has been shown to be useful as a way of preventing and treating various changes such as hernias, changes in genital region, balance and posture.
The main benefits of hypopressive gymnastics are:
1. Tune to waist
Hypopressants decrease abdominal circumference due to isometric contraction maintained for long periods during exercise. When sucking the organs in there is a change in the internal abdominal pressure that tones the rectus abdominis, and is also a great tool to combat abdominal diastasis which is the removal of the rectus abdominis muscles during pregnancy.
2. Tone your back muscles
With this exercise, there is a decrease in abdominal pressure and the vertebrae will be decompressed, which is very useful to decrease chronic low back pain, in preventing and fighting herniated discs.
3. Combat urine and feces loss
During the contraction performed the muscles of the perineum are sucked upwards, repositioning the bladder and strengthening the ligaments, which support them being very useful to combat urinary, fecal incontinence and even uterine prolapse.
4. Prevent hernias
With hypopressive it is possible to prevent herniated discs, inguinal and abdominal because the method decreases intra-abdominal pressure, realigning the whole body.
5. Combat column deviations
Exercises are great for combating spinal deviations such as hyperlordosis, scoliosis and hyperkyphosis because it promotes reprogramming and alignment of the spine and pelvis.
6. Improve sexual performance
When performing this exercise there is an increase in blood flow in the intimate region which also improves sensitivity and pleasure.
7. Improve posture and balance
The method improves muscle tone, reducing the work and tension of muscle groups that are working excessively and increasing the tone of groups that are working less, normalizing the tone of the entire body. When combined with other exercises such as the pyramid or abdominal plank, for example it helps to improve body posture and when combined with exercises such as support on just 1 foot or forming a plane or star it helps to improve the balance of the body.
These benefits can be achieved by practicing hypopressive exercise regularly. In addition to breathing can be used in a unique way, it can also be combined with several postures that increase its benefit to the body. Each posture can be personally indicated by a physiotherapist with knowledge of the technique respecting the needs of each one, but a good option includes the combination of Pilates exercises with the hypopressive method in the same training.
Hypopressive gymnastics allows a reprogramming of the pelvic and abdominal muscles that are usually weakened in people who do not practice any type of physical activity and also in those who practice some activity that generates excessive internal pressure such as those who do weight training in the gym or do traditional sit-ups .
How to do hypopressive exercises
To start, you just need to sit with your legs crossed inhale normally and then do a forced exhalation taking all the air out of your lungs. When you reach this point, you should suck your belly in, keeping this apnea for as long as you can, until it is essential to breathe. Then breathe normally and do the same exercises more often.
When you master this technique, you can change your posture to stretch other muscles in your body, favoring your spine, for example.
Hypopressive exercise for the back
A good hypopressive exercise for your back is:
- Keep your legs hip-width apart and take all the air out of your lungs and suck your abdomen in;
- Lean forward, trying to touch the floor with your hands, keeping your legs straight. Your body should be positioned like a pyramid;
- You should stay in this position for as long as you can not breathe, then inhale normally and rise slowly.
- You can stand on tiptoe and push the floor with your hands, keeping your spine and head well aligned, if you can keep your soles and palms flat against the floor.
You can do this hypopressive gymnastics daily, committing yourself to maintaining maximum contraction in apnea for as long as possible. There is no minimum or maximum number of repetitions and you can do as much as you think is comfortable and not dizzy.