Having large breasts is a bonus on the dating scene, but it can also be a pain in the neck -- literally. Very large breasts can cause poor posture and are associated with chronic back, neck and shoulder pain, according to MayoClinic.com. Strengthening your abdominal muscles improves your posture and protects your back. By reducing your body-fat percentage and developing strong abdominal muscles, you can reduce your breast size, improve your appearance and relieve breast pain.
Female breasts consist of two main types of tissue -- the glandular tissue and secondary stromal tissue. The glandular tissue has the lobules and ducts that produce and transport milk to the nipples in breastfeeding women. According to the American Cancer Society, the secondary breast tissue contains fatty connective tissue that gives breasts their size and shape. By performing the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s recommended 150 minutes of moderately intense cardiovascular exercise weekly, you can reduce your overall body-fat percentage, which can help decrease your breast size. Choose a moderately intense exercise that requires less breast movement such as cycling rather than brisk walking, because the movement may cause back pain in women with large breasts.
Women have pectoral muscles just like men, which sit under the breasts. Strengthening your pectoral muscles will not help you reduce your breast size. However, building these muscles will give your breasts a slight lift and improve your posture. Muscles also need more energy than fat; therefore, it will help improve your basal metabolic rate, which is the amount of energy you burn while resting. Perform chest exercises such as the classic pushup and dumbbell bench press. Aim for high repetitions between eight to 12 reps in two or three sets.
Building strong abs is vital in preventing back pain associated with large breasts. Tightened stomach muscles give your back the flexibility it needs to stabilize your spine, according to the "Los Angeles Times." Your abdominal muscles consist of several muscle groups including the obliques, transversus abdominis and rectus abdominis muscles. Engage these muscle groups with the front plank, side plank, crunches and the Swiss ball pike. Perform eight to 12 reps of crunches and the Swiss ball pike in three sets. Attempt to hold the plank for as long as possible and perform two or three sets.
If you have lost weight and strengthened your muscles and still experience breast-related pain, you may have to consider breast reduction surgery. MayoClinic.com states that successful breast surgery can help improve your self-image and your participation in physical activity. In the meantime, select a sports bra that helps reduce the up-and-down movement of your breasts, as well as prevents your breasts swinging from side to side. Choose encapsulation sports bras; they hold each breast in a separate cup, thus preventing movement. Avoid supplements or pills that promise to help reduce breast size. Spot reduction is a myth and some of these fad pills can be dangerous.
- MayoClinic.com: Breast Reduction Surgery: Breast Reduction Surgery
- American Cancer Society: What Is Normal Breast Tissue And What Does It Do?
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: How Much Physical Activity Do Adults Need?
- Los Angeles Times: Exercise For Strong Abs To Support The Back
- Oprah.com: How to Find a Sports Bra
Frank Yemi has been a professional writer since 2007, and has contributed to several health and fitness magazines. He has worked as a medical fact checker and sports nutritionist in the United Kingdom. Yemi holds a Bachelor of Science in medical physiology, as well as a Master of Science in applied sports nutrition.