Pregnant women had joined a viral TikTok trend and shared videos of them shrinking and growing their baby bumps, causing concern to some to grow concerned for their baby’s safety.
One particular mother, Megan Call from Hawaii, seemed to have won this challenge when she shared a video of herself making her baby bump nearly indistinguishable in a now trending TikTok video.
“The ultimate baby bump challenge,” posted Call on her video, which garnered a total of 2.9 million likes.
The video, which was posted in April, shows her standing up while her husband pulling a fake “plug” on her belly button, followed by a sound of something deflating while Call’s stomach flattens out.
Many users where stunned, wondering what exactly did they just watched.
“I just vocally said wait what,” one user wrote.
“did I just watch a child be absorbed [sic],” jokingly wrote another.
“Hahahaha the sound effect got me for sure,” said the third.
However, other users grew concerned about the welfare of their unborn child and wondered if the feat Call demonstrated was safe.
“That’s not good for the baby,” said one concerned use.
“I bet he’s suffocating,” said another.
In an attempt to put the confusion to end, one user said:
“These type of exercises are actually RECOMMENDED people! It strengthens your muscles and is a healthy way to keep your core fit during pregnancy.”
The feat Call showed is called the “Belly Pump” – a part of a series of deep core exercises taught to mothers-to-be by The Bloom Method fitness program.
Based in Colorado, the program teaches diaphragmatic breathing combined with deep core engagement.
“The Belly Pump follows your breath with an inhale as the belly expands,” founder Brooke Cates explained on Instagram.
“Exhale as you activate your pelvic floor and TA [Transverse Abdominis, deep core muscle] together. Keep the breath slow and controlled throughout the exercise.”
In her blog post, Cates, who specialized in pregnancy and post birth exercises, explained in detail as to how the baby is safe while doing the exercise.
“As you exhale imagine drawing your hipbones in towards one another as if to kiss one another. You can also imagine that your exhale attempts to draw your obliques to the front of your torso, near your belly button. Knitting the bottom of your ribcage together is a super common cue that helps connect to the upper portion of the TA.”
“Don’t worry, the baby is completely safe with this move — the baby simply slides up into the rib cage during the core activation,” she added.
Earlier this month, Call posted another video in response to one user, with the caption, “The moment you’ve all been waiting for.”
On her Instagram, Call shared their adorable family photo, saying, “We are officially a family of four and feel like we are on cloud nine…”
She also posted a photo of herself six weeks after giving birth, noting how proud she is of her “wrinkly, loose belly.”
“I’ve just learned to embrace what God gave me and feel grateful for what my body has gone through. Trust me when I say self confidence comes way easier when you have a grateful mindset.”