Diastasis Recti/Abdominal Separation Test
Are you a mum? Do you know what a diastasis / abdominal split is? It is when your tummy muscles have not joined back after having a baby and more than 1cm apart can cause you back problems and issues with trying to regain flat and strong abdominals. This does not just apply to new mums you can still have a split years later!
Please try this simple test to check –
1. Lie on your back with your knees bent, and the soles of your feet on the floor.
2. Place one hand behind your head, and the other hand on your abdomen, with your fingertips across your midline-parallel with your waistline- at the level of your belly button.
3. With your abdominal wall relaxed, gently press your fingertips into your abdomen.
4. Roll your upper body off the floor into a “crunch,” making sure that your ribcage moves closer to your pelvis.
5. Move your fingertips back and forth across your midline, feeling for the right and left sides of your rectus abdominis muscle. Test for separation at, above, and below your belly button.
Use Correct Form for an Accurate Assessment
Make sure that you don’t simply pull your head off the mat-a common mistake. To effectively contract your abs, you need to move your ribcage closer to you pelvis. If you don’t adequately activate your abdominal wall, you might assume that you have abdominal separation. But for most, as the rib cage moves closer to the pelvis and the contraction deepens, the width of the gap at your midline will decrease.
Don’t panic if you feel a “hole” in your belly in the first few postpartum weeks. Everyone’s connective tissue at the midline is lax after childbirth. As you recover, your midline will slowly regain its former density and elasticity, and the “hole” will become shallower, and if you do the right exercises, more narrow too.
Signs of Diastasis Recti/Abdominal Separation
• A gap of more than 2 1/2 finger-widths when the rectus abdominis is fully contracted.
• The gap does not shrink as you contract your abdominal wall.
• You can see a small mound protruding along the length of you midline.
If you are concerned Pilates and the New Yummy Tummy Rescue Programme can help you. Please contact me if you are need to join this programme.