Firm up Your Bust: The Best Exercises for Preventing Saggy Breasts

Concentrated young Black woman doing push-ups on yoga mat on the beach in the morning

You may think that your breasts are largely made of fat. While this is true for women, it does not mean it is entirely made of fat. Breasts are also made of muscle which contribute to support. Where there is muscle, there is an aspect you can manage. Through the right kind of exercises that targets the muscles on your chest, you can prevent early sagging of your breasts. 

Warm Up Through Stretching

Before you begin with any high-resistance exercise, doing some stretches that will get your muscles familiar with the motion can help you prepare for what is ahead in your routine. Start with the cobra pose. Lie on your stomach and put your hands aligned with your chest as if you are about to do a pushup. Spread your feet a little so your legs are separated and not closed in on each other. Instead of going all the way with lifting all your body up, arch your back and push your upper torso up. Your head is your center of direction so you can face up so that your upper torso follows this direction. You will feel a stretch on chest muscles but this will also be stretching and engaging other muscle groups that help with your stability. Take deep breaths while holding the cobra pose. To achieve a full pose you will want to push yourself up until your stomach is no longer touching the floor but you are still supported by your pubic area and your legs are still flat on the floor.

Back to Basics: Pushups

Once you are all good and ready for more training, you will feel that good blood flow and extended mobility. The most basic of the no-equipment exercises is the push-up. While it looks as simple as pushing yourself up the ground, there are certain things you need to watch out for when doing this exercise to ensure that you are directly targeting your chest muscle and not just allowing other muscle groups to compensate during the range of motion.  Here are some key notes to remember when doing the pushup:

  1. The push-up focuses on the chest but will also work the triceps. The triceps are the muscles of your arms that are important for pushing.
  2. To be more chest muscle focused, widen your pushup stance by placing your hands further sideways away from your chest but not too far that you are unable to bend them for a pushup.
  3. Firming your core with your body straight and your back neutral,  push up from the ground and feel your chest exert effort.
  4. Avoid hunched shoulders so that you don’t lock in when doing this exercise which lets other muscle groups take over where the chest should be working.
  5. Do not bend your back so your full range of motion is completed and the right muscles are hit.

If this turns out to be quite difficult at first, you can do the following:

  1. Find a wall or a sturdy table that has a fixed position. You can proceed to do the pushups from the wall or raised surface. As you improve with your strength, you can find a lower-raised surface until you are able to do a full push up on the floor.
  2. You can also start from the floor but instead of adding a raised surface,  bend your legs so your knees are the starting point of where your body should raise up. This makes the weight of the pushup lighter.
  3. If you feel you are confident in holding the weight of your hold body up but you are unable to push up from the floor, you can do negative push ups instead. Start from a plank position and maintain your firm posture while slowly lowering yourself to the floor. Then you can set yourself up in a plank position again and repeat the process. As time goes by you will find yourself easily pushing yourself from the floor and doing full proper pushups.

Add Some Weight

Fitness. Sporty woman exercising with barbell in gym.

If you have access to dumbbells at home, doing the dumbbell press greatly helps with building more muscle on your chest. Every chest workout routine always has a variation of this exercise that targets your pectoral muscles effectively. Some may use resistance bands and cables for this. The idea is to allow the chest muscles to push with progressive overload.

You can do this on a workout bench so you can have a better range of movement. Set the bench to a slight incline which is enough that you are not fully upright but you are not flat on your back either. Arch your back slightly and have your dumbbells situated along the line of your chest while bending your elbows. Feel your chest muscles as you inhale and push the dumbbells forward. If you feel yourself struggling with the movement or not really feeling the chest muscles work, you might need to lower the weight of your dumbbells to a pair that can allow you to do movement properly. Remember, form is more important than how much weight you can press.

If you have a chest press rack, you can also do barbell chest presses. However, this is a more advanced move that will require someone to spot you especially if you are doing a heavier set. The spotter will make sure they can pick up your barbell if it becomes too heavy for you to push up back on the rack. Safety is key in any exercise you are doing.

Lastly, do not underestimate the importance of chest fly exercises. You can still do dumbbell and cable variations of this exercise. It focuses on the center part of your chest where your cleavage may form. Keeping your arms stretched out as if you are opening them to receive a hug. With your elbows just slightly bent,  move your hands towards your front as if you are clapping them. Do not make your arms bend more than the already slightly bent stance of your elbows. Doing this motion alone even without weights you can feel the inner chest muscles work.

Other Things You Need to Know

While exercising does help in the prevention, how your breasts will turn out in due course of time is also dependent on genetics. There is only so much you can do non-surgically if your family has a history of certain physical qualities. Once you have exhausted all self-initiated methods, you may talk to your doctors about breast augmentation options that can improve the structure of your breasts. 

Nutrition and healthy lifestyle overall can also help in the prevention of sagging breasts. However, the information provided above is focused on prevention. If you already are going through this change, a more direct approach will be necessary such as surgery. 

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