Scroll Top

A Physiotherapist’s Guide to Diastasis Recti

Diastasis recti is a condition in which the rectus abdominis muscle, also known as the “six-pack muscle,” separates along the midline, causing a gap that can weaken the core and lead to pain or dysfunction. This condition is common among pregnant women and can also occur in men and non-pregnant women.

In this blog, we will discuss the causes, symptoms, and treatment options for diastasis recti from a physiotherapy perspective.

Diastasis recti Causes:

  • Pregnancy: the abdominal muscles stretch during pregnancy to accommodate the growing uterus. This can lead to the separation of the rectus abdominis muscle.
  • Abdominal obesity: excess weight puts pressure on the abdominal muscles, causing them to separate.
  • Poor posture: poor posture can cause repetitive strain on the abdominal muscles, leading to separation.


  • A bulge in the midline of the abdomen, especially when straining or doing abdominal exercises
  • Lower back pain
  • Poor posture and balance
  • Weakness in the abdominal muscles


  • Physiotherapy: physiotherapy can help to improve the function of the abdominal muscles and restore proper alignment and stability. This includes exercises to improve posture, core strength, and stability.
  • Corrective exercises: a physiotherapist will design a personalized exercise program to target the specific needs of the patient. This may include exercises to improve posture, activate the transverse abdominis, and strengthen the rectus abdominis. 
  • Exercises to avoid: the following exercises are to be avoided if you have been diagnosed with Diastasis Recti:
    • Crunches or Sit-ups
    • Planks
    • Leg Lifts
    • V- Sits

It’s important to consult with your Physiotherapist to have a personalized treatment plan designed for your specific condition. They can include:

  • Manual therapy: Manual therapy techniques such as soft tissue mobilization, massage, and trigger point release can be used to improve muscle function and reduce pain.
  • Education: The physiotherapist will educate the patient on proper posture, body mechanics, and exercises to avoid that may worsen diastasis recti.

In conclusion, diastasis recti is a common condition that can be effectively managed with physiotherapy. The physiotherapist will assess the patient’s symptoms, causes, and individual needs and design a personalized treatment plan to help restore core stability and reduce pain. If you are experiencing symptoms of diastasis recti, please call us or book online at our CURAVITA Glebe Clinic at 613-237-9000 or our CURAVITA Byward Clinic at 613-860-8600 to book an assessment with one of our Physiotherapists.

Comments (1)

[…] These hormones can stay in your body for several months after pregnancy. Another potential issue is diastasis recti; the separation of the abdominal muscles. This can be a contributing factor the lower back, hip or […]

Comments are closed.