(Don’t mind the green screen pic! HAHA we were shooting some content for a new postpartum guide for all of you!)
Do you know if you have Diastasis Recti?
A condition in which the large abdominal muscles separate. Most often caused by pregnancy and can be worsened if there is excess strain put on the abdominal muscles during pregnancy i.e. ab exercises.
(Which is why I discontinued all ab exercises during my pregnancy)
This condition can increase the weakness in the pelvic floor, transverse abdominis, and can lead to back issues.
Is it important to test yourself to see if you have DR or ab separation after having a babe to make sure 1. When you start to bring more weight baring workouts back into your routine, that you do it in a slow and controlled way and 2. if the separation is large, (more than 4 fingertips usually) that you seek proper care from a physical therapist to help decrease the separation.
You can check this if you have just had a baby or if you had a baby 2 years ago. If proper exercises aren’t utilized to help heal or fix the separation it can possibly get worse BUT it can also be healed. Even if it has been 2 years since you’ve had your babe. Most moms think that “extra pooch” on their belly after having kids is stubborn belly fat but it can actually be the DR manifesting itself!
FIRST, let’s talk about how to test for it
1. Lay flat on the floor with a neutral spine (meaning your back is relaxed with a natural curve in it)
2. Bend your knees and place your feet flat on the floor, as close to your glutes as possible.
3. Place one hand flat on your belly right below your ribs, so your fingertips are touching your belly button.
4. Place your other hand on the back of your head, right above your neck.
5. Use that hand to help support and lift your head straight into the air, with no bend in your neck or chin.
6. After you have lifted your head, you can then push your fingers into your belly and feel for the space between your ab muscles.
7. Measure the separation with the width of your fingertips.
I did this exercise when I was 4 weeks postpartum and I am so happy to say that my DR is very minimal with only a slight separation of 1.5 fingertips!
I didn’t measure with my other children although I remember feeling like the separation was quite significant after Baylor!
But after 3 pregnancy, I think I finally have it figured out! If anything, it helps me feel good about how it all ended up after all my fitness and activity during my pregnancy.
With all of that being said, I am working on a recovery/postpartum program that will help you strengthen your transverse abdominis, pelvic floor, and help reduce that Diastasis Recti. I have teamed up with @__christinejones who is a yogi extraordinaire with years and years of experience and training. We can’t wait for it to come out! (Probably in about a month)
Want to know what else helps with Diastasis Recti?
I’ve tried out a big old handful of support leggings and wraps and now that I am 5 1/2 weeks postpartum this week and finally have picked my favorites!
For sure my favorite support leggings are the leggings from @baobeimaternity they give you just the right amount of support but don’t feel too uncomfortable to workout in or stay in all day! They are a comfortable fabric as well that isn’t see through!! Yay!
Here is an example of me wearing them just this morning while shooting my new recovery/postpartum program! Not only do they support but they help me stay modest when I breastfeed!
WRAPS AND CORSETS: in numerical order
1.This corset is one that my friend @body_by_whitney let me borrow. It is designed for c-section mama’s too! It actually goes on like pants and has compression on your upper thighs up to your waist. I loved it for about a day but didn’t feel as compressed as I would have wanted in my midsection. I loved working out in it though. The link for this body support is HERE.
2.and 3. I bought some other wraps off of Amazon, and although I like them for short term wearing, like when I go for walks, it’s impossible to wear these for a long period of time and therefore kind of defeats the purpose of the wrap completely! They rise, move, and curl. They just aren’t practical.
I have the MOTHER TUCKER corset and I am obsessed! So so obsessed.
It tucks in all the right places and stays in place when I need to sit down and nurse. It’s also made with comfortable fabric so it doesn’t dig into your skin. It’s extra high in the back so it targets my back fat also and it’s a bit lower in the front as to not suffocate my boobs!
While we are talking about holding things in…I am going to link to my favorite sports bras! They seem to hold the girls in the best and have been comfortable enough for me to wear at night as well.
I hope this post helps all you pregnant mamas and all you who might be suffering with DR!
Remember, program coming soon!!!!!