Friday, November 7, 2014

ReCORE Results!


2 Weeks pp

Before ReCORE and FITsplint ™
3, 2.75, 3 Fingerwidth Separation  
32", 34" Waist measurements

12 weeks pp 
After ReCORE and FITsplint (10 weeks total, extra 4 weeks)
1.5, .5, 1        Fingerwidth Separation
26.5", 27.75" Waist Measurements

This in-home client received permission from her OBGyn to start ReCORE at 2 weeks postpartum. This was the 2nd vaginal pregnancy and was dealing with diastasis recti, weak knees and intermittent back aches. This mom was determined to wear the FITsplint and do the exercises. As you can see she made quite a bit of progress in 10 weeks! She wore the FITsplint for the first 4 weeks.. enough protect, load and align the tissue and help speed the process while tissue is trying to remodel itself in the 3 months postpartum.  She chose to extend the program and do an additional 4 weeks of ReCORE. I continued to progress her through more challenging core exercises. At the end of the program, her knee and back issues had dissolved, the connective tissue had tightened up well and she has moved on! She improved her core strength considerably with the core strength TVA test.


8 weeks pp
Before ReCORE and FITsplint™ 
3.5, 3, 2.5  Fingerwidth Separation   
34.5", 35.5" Waist measurements


After ReCORE (6 weeks total)
.75, 1.5, .75  Fingerwidth Separation
31.5", 33.5" Waist Measurements

This is another in-home client. Notice how asymmetrical the clients stance is before ReCORE?  ReCORE address total core reconditioning, coordination, breathing patterns and stabilization, including inner, outer abs, back, pelvic floor, glutes, adductors, quad, hamstring and postural muscles.  This client was definitely dealing with some muscle imbalances and misalignment. Her stance after ReCORE is quite different and more balanced.  This client had a c-section and had some definite numbness with ab sets. After a few weeks, she had full control and coordination of her abs and we were able to work on progressive strengthening. She also improved considerably with connective tissue tightening and core strength TVA test.

Celeste Goodson is an ACE Advanced Health and Fitness Specialist, Pre/ Post Natal Trainer, certified to train those with musculoskeletal, neuromuscular and metabolic conditions. Celeste has a B.S. in Fitness and Wellness and has worked in physical therapy, cardiac rehab, and numerous fitness settings for over 15 years.  Celeste is a runner and mom of 3. Celeste has designed the ReCORE Program™  and the Maternity and Post-Natal FITsplint™  to help moms strengthen, support and splint the core during and after pregnancy for a more effective recovery. 

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Are you "sucking it in"?

Okay, so you've probably heard the term "suck it in." Maybe your trainer has even cue'd you to do it. Hopefully instead though, you hear the term "engage the core." But really...these terms only mean something if you know what they mean and know how to do them properly, right?

First of all, lets explain the difference. Sucking it in is NOT the same as engaging your core.

"Suck it in" is synonymous for "rib flaring" or "rib thrusting" It's easy to remember what "sucking it in" means, because you can picture all those beach photos where guys or gals try to suck in their abs to make them look thinner. Instead they look obviously ridiculous because their chest is sticking way out. Yeah..they are just thrusting their ribs.

Here is the difference between a Relaxed Core, Engaged Core and Rib Flare (a.k.a sucking it in)
ReCORE Fitness


ReCORE Fitness
Now for the Front Views
ReCORE Fitness
Recore fitness

ReCORE Fitness

Now I didn't really exaggerate my rib thrust, but you can still see the ribs flaring. Some do it even more than this.

Do you see the ribs flaring with a person "sucks it in?" When a person rib flares, they are not actively contracting the core muscles. They are just bringing the air from their belly up into their ribs. 

Why should you not rib thrust or "suck it in?"
1- PAIN/INJURY Some people are chronic rib thrusters and this stresses the nervous system, contribute to misalignment and back/neck pain etc.
2- INCORRECT BREATHING - Belly breathing is important and if you are breathing heavy through the chest and not using the belly, you are messing with proper breathing patterns.
3- NOT ACTUALLY USING CORE MUSCLES PROPERLY - If you suck it in, you are not contracting or using the core muscles properly. This means you are not using your your core strength when you need, lifting heavy weights, stabilizing the body etc..  If you are trying to re-activate or strengthen core muscles, you will be wasting your time with constant rib thrusting or "sucking it in"
4. IT LOOKS RIDICULOUS - We can all tell in those photos if you are trying to suck it in and hide that avoid the embarrassment and just don't do it :) 

So are you "sucking it in", or are you actually "engaging your core"?

WATCH this VIDEO to learn how to engage your core. It's an oldie but goodie. Proper breathing is important. You can learn laying down, sitting or standing with good posture. The pelvic floor is involved too, but one step at a time :)

P.S. - Once you get the breathing and form down with engaging the core, then you need to work on progressively and specifically strengthening the inner core.

Celeste Goodson is an ACE Advanced Health and Fitness Specialist, Pre/Post Natal Trainer, certified to train those with musculoskeletal, neuromuscular and metabolic conditions. Celeste has a B.S. in Fitness and Wellness and has worked in physical therapy, cardiac rehab, and numerous fitness settings for over 15 years.  Celeste is a runner and mom of 3. Celeste has designed the ReCORE Program™  and the Maternity and Post-Natal FITsplint™  to help moms strengthen and support core if needed during and after pregnancy.

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Expert Course on Diastasis Recti LAUNCHES!!

I'm really excited to help announce the official launch of the Expert Course on Diastasis Recti over at FIT2b! There is nothing else out there quite like this. Women can now have access to numerous e-courses online and learn from world renowned experts from their home. Beth has done an amazing job putting this together. If you want to know the latest on research and help yourself make informed decisions on your diastasis recti, I would encourage you to watch all the courses. You will walk away knowing more than most health professionals!!

For some reason, I couldn't get a snap shot of all the people involved, so here is a listing of the Experts and topics from the FIT2B page.

It’s about what you feed your core, and nutritionist Dave Barnas will exlain how what you eat affects your belly.
It’s about what your core does to support your bones and how the position of your bones affects your core, and Dr. Shannon Anhorn will help you understand what good chiropractic care can do for your core.
It’s about what thoughts you hold in your core, and psychotherapist health coach Anita Bentata will enlighten you on the mind-body connection.
It’s about what is supporting your core, and splinting guru Celeste Goodson will help you know if you need to bind your belly or not.
It’s about what rehab means to your core, and world-renowned physical therapist Kelly Deanwill help you visualize your abdominal anatomy.
It’s about what your core and pelvic floor do together, and the founder of Pelvienne WellnessKim Vopni will delicately demonstrate this intimate bond.
It’s about what certain poses can do to help or hinder your progress, and Holy Yoga trainerChristina Mroz will lead you through a safe, relaxing routine.
It’s about what fitness movements are safe and which are not for a healing diastasis recti, and the founder of this very website Bethany Learn will give you the clarity you need.
It’s about what happens to the core during c-section and other surgeries, and Lorraine Scapens who founded will teach you how to heal from that.
Click below to learn more and purchase if interested! If you take the course, I'd love to hear about it!!
Experts on Diastasis Recti Online CourseExperts on Diastasis Recti Online Course

Also, if you haven't already, follow us over on our Facebook and Twitter page!! FIT2B will be having some great giveaways and I'll announce those later today :)

Module One: 

Monday, August 18, 2014

5 Things Women Need to Understand About Diastasis Recti

Diastasis Recti - This is a scary word when a mom first hears it. It's a word moms rarely hear from their Obgyn and if they do..they are usually offered only one solution - surgery.  But there's hope! And while there are certain exercises to stay away from's not forever.  There is a lot that can be improved about the postpartum protocol, but in the mean time, here is what moms need to know to take charge of their health. P.S...I know there are some great OBGYN's & midwives out there. If you had a great one..mention them below!!

Diastasis Recti

Understanding Diastasis Recti

1. Diastasis recti (DR) is not an actual separation of the muscles. A lot of health professionals do know this one, but some don't. DR is a certain degree of "abdominal separation." 3 finger widths or more is considered DR. Really, it should be called "excessive abdominal strain." The muscles have not actually separated from the connective tissue. The connective tissue (linea alba) has just stretched, thinned and weakened. Occasionally there can be some tearing of the tissue and hernias can then develop.

2. Diastasis Recti or ab separation is only about 25% of the core weakness issues that moms are dealing with postpartum. Many think if they don't have DR after pregnancy, they are good to go.  After pregnancy though, all moms have some degree of separation, thinning and weakness. It may not be a full 3 fingerwidths or more, but it may stretch further if ignored or contraindicated exercises are performed. What are the other 3 big issues?

  • Misfiring of muscles (disconnect between pelvic floor, transverse abdominal muscles, diaphragm and multifidus) Often postpartum, core muscles do not fire in the correct order..or muscles do not contract like they should and other muscles compensate instead. Waking up the muscles to regain proper muscle coordination is key.
  • Deflated muscles -Picture what a ballon looks like after it deflates. It does not go back to its original shape. Good thing is... we are not rubber, our muscles and tissue can shorten and get pretty close to original length. Every mom has excessive elongation of the muscles that are stretched and weakened . This contributes to the "belly bulge." even if their separation is minimal. 
  • Core Instability -When moms return to their typical exercise, they are often challenging the body to perform without stabilizing and strengthening their inner core first. This unbalance creates a ripe environment for injury or weakness issues down the line. Prolapse, incontinence, hip injuries, back pain, pelvic pain,  (which may be present before delivery) will be stressed considerably when many of these issues can be avoided if reconditioning the core is done first. P.P.S -Have you reconditioned the core properly and still have issues? Some women may need to be referred out to a pelvic floor physical therapist. Know a great one? Share below!

3. Measuring Diastasis Recti accurately is challenging.  Just like calculating body fat, there is room for error depending on the methods used before and after.  To get the most accurate measurements, it should be done the exact same way by the same person in order to note any change happening.(VIDEO - how to check for Diastasis Recti) Not sure you are measuring accurately or maybe you don't have anyone to help you? Don't stress! Just like body fat %, it is not the only measurement that can show progress.  I use 4 other measurements with ReCORE to document change and progress.

4. Moms can get full function and strength back even if their separation doesn't close all the way!  Yes, it is true! Moms are often told that their separation needs to close all the way. And while it is important to get the connective tissue to shorten the best it just might not. {GASP} If it doesn't, it usually comes very close with proper exercises and/or splinting. Splinting is not required but can help speed the healing process, help with proprioception and reduce stress on the tissue. Women CAN regain full function of their inner/outer core with a separation. It is not ONLY about the width of the connective tissue separation, but whether the muscles engage and contract properly and whether a person can maintain proper form. 

5. Moms CAN do any core exercise again!  What?  No restrictions?  I may just get some crazy emails after this. But after having trained moms exclusively with separations for over 4 years and dealing with it myself,  I've learned that women can safely do any core exercise again (if 3 important criteria are met). Would I say to my ReCORE graduates, "Congrats! Go ahead and return to your 100's of crunches." Absolutely not.. not necessary, not needed. There are many other more effective ways to strengthen the core.  Crunches are not on the top of my list, but doing a few here or there correctly (meeting the 3 criteria) is key.  The simple act of curling the body forward is a useful functional movement when done correctly.

These points are mentioned not to scare (and there are a lot of scare tactics out there)..but to educate and inspire women to take charge of their core health.  Corrective exercise and splinting can help minimize or close Diastasis Recti. Surgery is not the only option. Surgery will not restore your core strength. Surgery may possibly be needed in some cases, however the core needs to be strengthened properly before and after surgery to see how the muscles will respond.  Give your body a chance to respond with corrective, progressive exercises and splinting if desired. It does take some time and effort, but reconditioning the inner core is the first step to getting back your core strength, stability and function.

Celeste Goodson is an ACE Advanced Health and Fitness Specialist, Pre/ Post Natal Trainer, certified to train those with musculoskeletal, neuromuscular and metabolic conditions cleared by a physician. Celeste has a B.S. in Fitness and Wellness and has worked in physical therapy, cardiac rehab, and numerous fitness settings for over 15 years.  Celeste is a runner and mom of 3. Celeste has designed the ReCORE Program™  and the Maternity and Post-Natal FITsplint™  to help moms strengthen, support and splint the core during and after pregnancy. 

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