I spent too long in denial.
I’d heard of Diastasis Recti (DR), but refused to accept that I had one. Finally, I turned to diastasis recti exercises to help heal my problems, but first, let me tell you about the beginning of my journey and how I got to this place.
Diastasis Recti Exercises: My Journey to Healing
After the birth, I dropped weight very quickly, especially since the sickness continued until he was five months old. While I found myself in a size 0 (that’s how sick I was), I noticed my tummy still looked as though I was 3 to 4 months pregnant.
While the sickness began to fade and I was even able to gain weight and get back up to my usual size, my tummy only seemed to get bigger.
I exercised rigorously, especially my abs. I also noticed that the lower back spasms I had before were becoming increasingly worse, so I worked my abs more! And regardless of how much I worked on my posture, I couldn’t get it right. Some of my reasoning included:
- I have weak abs from having so many babies.
- I have weak upper body strength and my body is compensating.
- I have a small frame, and this is how I’m built.
At a well-woman visit, the midwife checked me for diastasis recti.
Sure enough, I had a separation.
With the next pregnancy, I noticed the same pain returning. When my four-year-old came to hug me, I felt my body flinch. Simply raising my arm to take pictures sent little shocks down my side. And I could feel the muscles in my tummy spread out like a V. They twitched and pulled with movement.
The first provider I spoke with after the birth of my fifth child said it sounded as though I’d developed a hiatal hernia which was causing my symptoms.
Guess what I learned after doing some research? DR can lead to hiatal hernia.
It can also lead to other issues that I was experiencing.
Back to the last pregnancy–
Knowing that I had several more months to go, I sought out help!
Tummy Team offers both an online prenatal and a postnatal DR rehab program! And I started!
The prenatal program is 6 weeks, and I hoped to see and feel some real improvements in January. Even if I simply prevented further damage, I’d be pleased.
From the Tummy Team site:
Diastasis Recti is most common in prenatal and postnatal women due to the extreme stretching of the abdominal wall that occurs with pregnancy. However, it is actually a symptom of a weak, imbalanced core, poor postural alignment and repetitive forward forceful pressure on the abdominal wall from bracing, bearing down, crunches and more. Children and men can also present with a diastasis and often heal very quickly with the proper core rehabilitation.
A weak core and a separated abdominal wall is at risk for a hernia and can contribute to low back pain, upper back pain, pelvic floor issues, intestinal issues, abdominal pain and much more. It is a serious condition that will lead to multiple other physical conditions if left untreated.
From what I’d heard from other DR experts, this wasn’t simply a case of weak, stretched-out abs. The abs were actually broken and needed to be repaired–they wouldn’t heal without proper rehabilitation.
Can you see the separation in the image below? It isn’t difficult to imagine the issues this separation can cause.
This image looks less severe compared to other images I’ve seen across the internet, and I wondered if mine was even wider.
Have you experienced Diastasis Recti? If so, how did you rehabilitate your abs? Did you notice an improvement in your overall health? The proper rehabilitation and diastasis recti exercises are vital to your overall health.
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