I have had an inguinal hernia surgery about an year ago,and am back to normal lifting,now in case of lifting weights near the PR's we know that we have to brace the core in order to keep the torso stable and both hips and shoulder should rise together(in case of squats) to have a good rep.But bracing the core means keeping air within the diaphragm and contracting the abdominal muscle for a tight torso,now I know that this puts pressure in the abdominal wall,so should I prevent heavy squats or I should keep just doing it,just keep my progress steady? Also are there any corrective exercises for a person who has suffered from inguinal hernia like strengthening the abdominal walls?

1 Answer 1


Abdominals are actually there for our spinal health. We must use our abs and glute muscles to keep our spine under control. However, bracing the abs means contracting them isometrically, it does not mean holding your breath.

If you are afraid, you should not go heavy like 1 rep max. However, even if you are lifting 2 kilos from the ground, you should approach it like it is very heavy. So, try to control your abdominal muscles without "holding" your breath. Holding your breath is not good.

Addition; No, it does not increase the risk of hernia. Instead it decreases it. It is very possible to get lower-back problems if you don't know how to brace your abs (and also good form).

  • Thank you for the advice.Now my training approach is steady progressions instead of trying to hit PRs every week. It's not as exciting but still maybe it's safer comparatively.
    – S.D
    Jun 8, 2018 at 12:49
  • He mentioned he already had inguinal hernia, which is not the same as spinal hernia. Lifting heavy is not without risks and it might increase the risk of hernia.
    – BKE
    Jun 8, 2018 at 14:50
  • @sagnikdas yes, building strength and testing strength is very different. It is actually not useful to check for 1RM unless you are competing. BKE, that is why I specifically mentioned lower-back and spine. Thank you for your insight.
    – Michael C.
    Jun 9, 2018 at 14:13

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