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.
- 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
- 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 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.