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About Heather Jeffcoat, DPT | Los Angeles Pelvic Floor Doctor

Heather Jeffcoat, DPT - los angeles pelvic floor doctor

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Laureen McVicker, PT, CLT

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Sarah Bellon DPT

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Stephany Tritt, PT, DPT

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Popular Blog Posts

chronically sucking in your tummy
Writing for Well + Good on chronically sucking in your tummy, Hannah Schneider reached out to me for my input on how it can affect your posture and tension levels. Here is a brief synopsis of the article, along with a link to the full article below.

Beware of Chronically Sucking In Your Tummy

Many people are probably familiar with sucking in their stomach, either to get into a tight pair of pants or to contort their stomach to appear smaller. The truth is that there's nothing wrong with having a stomach of any shape, and when it comes to chronically sucking your tum in, your anatomy isn't really into the action.

"Chronically sucking in your tummy means continuously activating your upper abdominal muscles to make your stomach look flatter," says Chelsea Waldkirch, PT, DPT, a pelvic floor therapist at the New Jersey-based Renew Physical Therapy. "Gripping or squeezing your upper ab muscles changes the function of your core, pelvic floor, and breathing strategies."

In short: Societal pressure might make you think a sucked-in stomach looks better, but the action can affect how your pelvic floor muscles elongate and contract. The pelvic floor is a hammock-like group of muscles laterally resting in your pelvic, beneath your core and abdominal organs. They are essential for supporting your organs from below, controlling how and when you pee and poop, and even sexual pleasure.

How could sucking in encourage pelvic floor dysfunction

Holding your stomach in can impact how the pelvic floor muscles elongate and contract, says Quiara Smith, MOT, OTR/L holistic and integrative pediatric pelvic health and occupational therapist and owner of Aloha Integrative Therapy. Some muscles in your body need to relax for others to work properly. For instance, your torso needs to relax to give you the proper trunk rotation to throw something, and different leg muscles relax at different times to allow you to walk. The same rules apply to the abdominal muscles for a whole host of movements, including breathing, moving, digestion, sexual pleasure, and going to the bathroom, according to Carly Cano, DPT, a physical therapist at the pelvic floor therapy practice FusionWellnessPT in Los Angeles.

The tummy is a popular place for humans to 'suck in,' or hold their tension. Over time, it can turn into a habit and eventually into a chronic state of tension,"

Chronic tension can cause excess pressure on your core muscles and your pelvic floor, Dr. Cano explains. "Think about squeezing a full tube of toothpaste in the middle. This will cause the toothpaste to move above and below where you squeeze," Smith says. Something similar happens when you suck in your stomach. By sucking in, you're placing a bunch of pressure on the middle of your core, which, she explains, weighs on your pelvic floor. Over time, Waldkirch says this can weaken the pelvic floor and lead to conditions like general dysfunction, stress incontinence, painful sex, and even pelvic organ prolapse.

For more great info on the dangers of chronically sucking in your tummy, continue to the full article here. Go here if you're ready to schedule an appoint with one of our trained physical therapists.

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Sherman Oaks

13425 Ventura Blvd.
Suite 200
Sherman Oaks, CA 91423

(818) 877-6910

The Sherman Oaks office is adjacent to Studio City and serves the Bel Air, Brentwood, West LA, Mulholland, Beverly Hills, Encino, Calabasas and San Fernando Valley area.

Map to Fusion Wellness PT Sherman Oaks Location


Monday 7:00-6:00
Tuesday 7:00-6:00
Wednesday 7:00-6:00
Thursday 8:00-6:00
Friday 7:00-6:00

Glendale/Montrose and Pasadena Areas

3702 Park Place
California 91020

(818) 873-1403

The Montrose area of Glendale is located minutes from Pasadena, Burbank, Silver Lake, Atwater Village, Los Feliz, Echo Park, and Eagle Rock.

Map to Fusion Wellness PT Montrose Location


Monday  7:00-6:00
Tuesday 7:00-4:00
Wednesday CALL
Thursday 7:00-4:00
Friday CALL

Beverly Hills

9012 Burton Way
Beverly Hills, CA 90211

(310) 871-9554

The Beverly Hills office is convenient to Mid-Wilshire, West Hollywood, Hollywood, Beverlywood, Korea Town, Downtown LA, Culver City, Century City, Santa Monica and Malibu.

Map to Fusion Wellness PT Sherman Oaks Location


Monday 12:00-5:00
Tuesday 7:00-6:00
Wednesday CALL
Thursday 2:00-6:00
Friday 7:00-6:00

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