Diastasis Recti.. what is it? It’s an abdominal separation. DR is normal during pregnancy, our bellies have to separate in order to make room for our growing babe. It SHOULD heal back together postpartum. However, in about 33% of women it doesn’t heal back properly. And it’s actually pretty common. I had this BAD after my first baby. I remember trying to do bicycle crunches and my stomach domed out like a football… and I definitely constantly looked like I was 4 mo pregnant. It can happen to anyone but seems more common if you have a shorter/ petite torso. For me my connective tissue was stretched so thin and it’s been a struggle to heal it… but I’ve healed it a TON. There are quite a few things to do if you have this issue. First you can check to see if you actually have an abdormal abdominal separation. (Btw it should be seperated some, that’s normal) .. what’s not normal is if it’s more than 2 fingers wide and super deep.
What you want is to build the connective tissue so the gap is not deep. To test you lay on your back, do a tiny crunch and put two fingers tips pointing down at your belly button, then just barely lift your head until you can feel the sides of your abs contract. See how many fingers wide this gap is and how deep. Test it all the way up and down your midline. Hopefully it’s all normal for you! If not there’s a few things you can do To help.. first thing is no crunches, planks, bad posture or anything that causes your abdominals to dome out. Check out the picture I attached for some ideas to help strengthen your abs and connective tissue. You can find more online & also YouTube videos of how to test your seperation if your confused.
Another thing that can help rebuild the connective tissue is supplementing with collagen and/or making your own bone broth that is filled with natural collagen. I do both. Sometimes I get burned out with making bone broth so much I just do the collagen 😉 I also found for ME to watch out with squatting/ deadlifting too heavy. Recently I tried to do super heavy deadlifts and a part of my seperation that was healed opened back up.
I hope this quick blog helps a bit! I’ve been getting some questions lately and just discussed this topic in my class. Most people think to get rid of the “mummy tummy” postpartum is to add more crunches and planks in… so make sure you check to see if you have a DR before doing so, otherwise it will make it much worse! Rehab those abs before adding back in those exercises