I promised we will look at Waist training and weight loss in April. If you are not on the Facebook page, you are missing a lot Waist Training. The weight loss gist and waist training is up already. I had a discussion with Che Nwagbo, the founder of my favorite waist trainer ALTER EGO CLOTHING (AEC). I asked her to discuss some benefits of waist training. Things people do not really pay attention to. Here are her thoughts
Physical Benefits of wearing a corset:
- Corsets help control back pain and correct posture: to help those with past injuries (e.g. car accidents, vertebral fractures, slipped discs), to neurological disorders (e.g. tics, ataxia) and wear and tear injuries (e.g. osteoarthritis, degenerative disc disease) and autoimmune disorders (e.g. rheumatoid arthritis, fibromyalgia).
- Corsets may prevent scoliosis patients from worsening of their curvature once they no longer have a brace, or they may be used to prevent back pain from the curve. Some experienced corsetieres have even designed corrective corsets that may help to reduce the curve over time.
- By extension, correct posture also helps prevent other skeletal issues. One viewer has experienced relief from her plantar fasciitis while wearing a corset because of the redistribution of her weight on her feet. I have experienced considerable pressure taken off my knees since wearing corsets (bad knees run in my family), as corsets have changed the way I sit and stand, and encourage me to keep my hips level.
- Corsets have also been known to reduce the intensity of headaches or migraines, and over time, some wearers have noticed that the corset has stop their headaches completely as proper posture can take tension off the neck and shoulders. Also, by potentially reducing the hyperlordosis in the lumbar spine, a properly-fitting corset can act as an orthopedic traction unit to prevent the spinal cord from being pinched or stretched (thereby preventing or helping to improve nerve problems).
- Corsets are used as lumbar support to prevent potential back injuries and give support during work — e.g. during heavy lifting, repeated tasks or long hours on one’s feet, or in front of a computer. This has been known to benefit those working trade careers like plumbing and automechanics, those in retail who lift stock or stand for many hours, and those in the medical and nursing fields when having to lift patients, etc.
- Those who have hypermobilility or connective tissue disorders like Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome sometimes experience injury due to weakness and hyperextension in their joints, and they may also experience chronic pain. Wearing a corset has helped some of these people by bracing the torso and preventing spontaneous movements that could lead to sprains, dislocations or other injuries.
- Corsets are sometimes used by singers as a support; they provide resistance against which the diaphragm can push, which may help the singer achieve higher or more powerful notes.
- Two women have mentioned that wearing a corset has helped improve their asthma. The upper lungs and bronchi may not be fully open or utilized with very poor posture, and correcting posture using a corset may help to open up the chest, relax the windpipe and allow easier breathing. Asthmatics please consult with your doctor before trying a corset, as not everyone has the same experience.
- Corsets can also help to protect the organs during horse-riding or motorcycling, acting like a kidney belt to prevent bruising of the retroperitoneal organs.
- Corsets are helpful in minimizing menstrual cramps in women. Many women temporarily relieve their dysmenorrhea by lying in the fetal position, which exerts pressure on the peritoneal organs and somewhat diminishes the painful uterine contractions.
- Corsets can mimic this position by exerting pressure on these same organs, reducing uterine contractions (and thus cramping) while her posture remains erect.
- Corsets can prevent some types of abdominal hernias by exerting external pressure on the abdomen, or may act like a girdle to prevent pre-existing hernias from worsening while the wearer waits for surgical repair. *NB: this may only help specific types of abdominal hernias, and results may vary – misuse of the corset may result in worse hernias in the case of hiatal/inguinal/femoral hernias. Always consult a doctor before trying a corset for any reason.
- If extensive injury to the abdominal wall has already occurred (from automotive accidents, surgeries or procedures like colostomies, etc.) and the muscles are unable to heal properly, corsets may provide a source of protection and can help increase the intra-abdominal pressure to prevent the muscles from collapsing.
- Corsets can sometimes help to correct diastasis recti, the separation of the abdominal muscles that some experience during their last term of pregnancy, if the corset is used post-partum to hold the muscles together and prevent them from separating further while they heal together again. *again, please check with your OB/GYN to see if compression wear is appropriate for you after childbirth. For those who have ligament disorders that may affect the position of the stomach and liver, a well-fitting corset can lift up and support these organs and prevent “floating” or dropped liver (hepaptosis).
- Corsets may be used as a weight loss aid – they act as an external gastric band and do not allow much expansion of the stomach, thus helping to control appetite and reduce food portions. Wearing a corset can also help the wearer to see themselves as a smaller person, ‘planting the seed’ of belief in their minds that weight loss is achievable, and acting as a strong motivation for these wearers to improve their nutrition and fitness regimen.
- Corsets give some women an hourglass shape that they may never be able to achieve naturally (through diet and exercise). Medications like steroids, or conditions like thyroid abnormalities or PCOS can make weight loss nearly impossible for some. On the other end of the spectrum, some patients with hyperthyroidism, pituitary issues, extremely fast metabolisms, or muscle wasting conditions may find it difficult or impossible to put on weight. However, the use of corsets can make it possible for women in both these situations to temporarily experience more of an hourglass shape even if their current gene expression or health situation dictates otherwise.
- Corsets can change a wearer’s figure semi-permanently through changes in muscle and fat pad morphology. Many athletic women use corsets to make their waists smaller. Female body builders have used corsets to reduce the size of their waists so they will have a more competitive edge in fitness competitions. Ex-professional swimmers have also used corsets after their careers to help reverse the effect of the “Swimmers’ barrel chest” and give them back the smaller rib-cage they had before swimming.
- Corsets are also worn by men who need back support – a custom fit piece can help them keep a masculine physique, so they don’t have to be concerned about inadvertently creating any feminizing effects. In those who have slow bowels/ constipation issues, the pressure of wearing a corset can sometimes stimulate the intestines and may allow a brief increase in peristalsis immediately after taking off the corset, making it easier to have a bowel movement. In those who have issues with diarrhea or fast bowels, wearing a corset snugly can sometimes slow down peristalsis, possibly lengthening the time between bowel movements. *this doesn’t work the same way for everyone – if you already experience abdominal pain, bloating or irregularity, ask your doctor before you’d like to try corseting.
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