Diastasis Recti Help

by Melissa West on

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Question on Recovery

Today’s question comes from Justine from the membership site:

Hi Melissa
Just done yoga for posture , is it common when doing plank on the exhalations to have very shaky abdominal muscles, or is it just me? I know after having 4 babies my stomach muscles parted and have never rejoined again , probably something I should work on more to improve this area and I find I often stand in stomach sticking out and bum poking back position like when you are heavily pregnant ! Must get in the habit to pull tum in and stand tall!!!!!
Thanks Justine Sweeney

So to answer Justine’s question, it is common for your muscles to shake in plank pose as your core stabilizers fire out.

But, what I wanted to cover and what I told her I would do a video on in a blog post for her is how to recover from diastasis recti following a pregnancy. That is when your stomach muscles part in pregnancy as she says and don’t rejoin again. It is possible to train them to rejoin.

First of all, let’s look at some contraindications, that is some exercises you should avoid in yoga if you have diastasis recti:

Movements where your upper body twists and your arms extend away from your midline such as triangle and reclined twist
Yoga Postures and Backbends that open up the abdominals such as up-dog, cow’s face pose, wild thing, etc.
Exercises that cause your abdominal wall to bulge out (of that space where your abdominal muscles have parted) upon exertion. Things like ab curls.
Quadruped exercises without sufficient abdominal support.

Today I want to show you 2 exercises.

You will need a towel for this.

  1. Breathing. Inhale into your side ribs and back. Exhale draw your ribcage in and naval to your spine. Focus on closing the gap where the diastasis recti is.
  2. Wrap a towel around your back and cross it in front of you in an X. This will draw the gap between your abdominals together. Tuck your chin to protect your neck. Inhale, exhale curl up. Hold and breath here. Inhale, exhale roll down.


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