Sign up to Print
Full screen
Share

IS DIASTASIS RECTI FIXABLE? | EXERCISE OR SURGERY

If you recently found out that you have developed a diastasis recti, it is common to feel stressed and overwhelmed by all of the information out there. In this article I hope to answer your most pressing questions.

Diastasis recti is not usually a permanent condition and can often be healed through strategic core rehab. It does take time and it will require hard work and dedication on your end, but it is usually possible to close the gap. Your gap may not close all the way. Diastasis recti is still being researched, however, recent studies have shown that the focus for diastasis healing should revolve around restoring core function rather than closing the gap entirely. Meaning that a small diastasis recti can  still be considered totally functional.

restore-your-core-diastasis-recti-variation

Are you looking for safe and restorative exercises to heal from diastasis recti?

Learn more about the RYC program

Are you looking for safe and restorative exercises to heal from diastasis recti?

Learn more about the RYC program

Identifying The Severity of the Diastasis Recti

To identify the severity of a diastasis recti, you must perform a self-assessment test, or have a physical therapist diagnose you with diastasis recti. Although I would recommend having a professional diagnose you, there is a self-test you can perform at home to help you determine whether or not you may have a diastasis recti. 

A self-assessment can be performed as follows:

  1. Lie on your back in a comfortable position. Bend your knees and place your feet flat on the floor.
  2. Place one hand on the midline of your core with your fingers pointing straight down on your abs.  
  3. If you need support for your head, place your other hand under your head and neck for support. Slowly lift your head and add minimal pressure to your fingers placed on your core. With no diastasis recti, there is the feeling of a toned wall as you lift your head up. If you feel a gap, or your fingers sink into your core, you likely have diastasis recti. In very obvious cases, you can feel the sides of your core muscles in between that gap on the left and right sides.
  4. Repeat the process for the areas just above your belly button and below your belly button to determine whether or not the diastasis recti is isolated or in your core as a whole.

A gap that is only one or two finger widths wide might not be a big concern, unless it is deep –  but caution is recommended. However, if you discover that you have a gap ranging from 2.7 cms or larger (2.5 fingers or larger) you should consult a PT or OT.

what DR looks like

If a self-test determines that you may have a diastasis recti, make an appointment with a physical therapist to assess you further. They will be exponentially helpful in helping decide what the next steps for you may be and how to begin your healing process.

How to Fix Diastasis Recti

rs.safe-diastasis-recti-exercises

Preventing or healing a DR can be a bit tricky to wrap our head around. A common diastasis recti myth: having a toned, slim abdomen is the primary result of healing. This just isn’t true and many athletes and bodybuilders have diastasis recti. One of the primary focuses in healing your diastasis recti is helping prevent you from making common (but harmful) workout cheats and to correct problematic exercises that end up damaging your abdominals rather than promoting core function. The end result is a functional core through intelligent core rehab.

Due to diastasis recti being more common during and after pregnancy, many methods of avoiding its development involve postural awareness, corrective exercises, and a conscious prehab approach during pregnancy. Yet, there are several things to keep in mind regardless of whether you are male or female, pregnant or not.

  • Understand a good / healthy / functional core strategy 
  • Practice appropriate breathing patterns
  • Ensure your abs are free from excess tension
  • Avoid exercises that increase focalized tension in the abdomen
  • Practice good posture

Although diastasis recti is not completely avoidable in some cases, the list above helps paint a clear picture on how to protect your core while still staying active. The key is to be mindful of your body’s function and how to increase your functionality and build strength without causing harm to your body.

Is diastasis recti fixable

7 Exercises for DR Recovery

Below is a list of diastasis recti exercises that I have found to help heal and correct a weakened core.

Candles/Core Engagement:

Come to sit tall or stand. Inhale and on the exhale, imagine you are blowing out 100 candles. As you blow, you should feel your core tighten and draw inwards. This can and should be practiced whenever working out and managing a load, a weight, a core move. It automates the core and begins to integrate the function of the core to the activity that you are doing.

Tabletop or Reverse Marching:

Lie down similarly to that of a diastasis test. On each exhale, practice candles. As you exhale, alternate bringing your knee, while still bent, toward your body. 

Seated Side Bend:

Sit comfortably. Possibly on a block or some pillows. Hold a yoga strap or belt overhead. Bend your elbows slightly to take the stress off of your neck and shoulders. Exhale, blow candles, tighten your core and side bend right and then exhale to go left. Your core should not bulge, brace or push out as you do these. These are great for upper body mobility, torso length and strength and are a great way to work your core without strain.

tips-for-lower-back-pain-from-diastasis-recti

Goddess Side Bend:

While standing with wide feet placement (knees aligned with feet), begin candles exhale and bend your knees slowly until they are level with your ankles. Stabilize your body by pressing your heels into the floor. Side bend by raising your arm while maintaining resistance. Repeat side rotations 3x and then return to a standing position.

Goddess Squat Twist:

Repeat steps outlined above but have your arms stacked across your chest. While in the goddess position, twist by using your ribcage and not your arms. Repeat side twists 4x and return to a standing position

You don’t have to live in

fear , pain or discomfort

Get back the confidence + lifestyle you love

You don’t have to live in

fear , pain or discomfort

Get back the confidence + lifestyle you love

Lunge with a Twist and Chop:

Practice lunging. As you bring one leg forward–all while maintaining correct posture–lift your hands, palms crossed, in front of your face. Then slowly begin to twist toward your forward leg. As you twist toward your forward leg, bring your arms across your thigh in a chopping motion.

Opposite Reach:

For this exercise, you will come onto your hands and knees and slowly lift the opposite arm and leg. If that is too hard, do just one at a time. As you lift, you exhale and blow candles, feel your core engage and be extra sure not to bear down, brace or bulge your core! Amazing for your shoulders, arms, core and booty.

Although diastasis recti is not completely avoidable in some cases, the list above helps paint a clear picture on how to protect your core while still staying active. The key is to be mindful of your body’s function and how to increase your functionality and build strength without causing harm to your body.

Surgical Option

In some cases exercise routines and strength building therapy do not accomplish the desired result. When this occurs, surgery is an option for fixing diastasis recti. However, surgery should be the last option you consider.

Diastasis recti surgery is very invasive and it may not be covered by your insurance due to it being considered a cosmetic surgery (abdominoplasty or “tummy tuck”). The recovery process can also take several months to a year depending on the severity of your diastasis recti and the extent of the surgery. That is why I encourage at least a year’s time of rehab before considering surgery. 



Article Source : restoreyourcore.com/learn/d...
Want to create own notes and collaborate?
Start your free account today:
By clicking “Sign up”, you agree to our Terms and Conditions