How To Do a Diastasis Recti Test On Yourself Accurately

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Question:  What do you call a hunch that you might have a Diastasis recti?

Answer: A gut feeling

Kidding aside, a diastasis recti is exactly that – a feeling in your gut - and plus a few more…

But before we dive into doing a diastasis recti test...

First let me guess, you haven’t gone to a medical professional yet? Right? Because you simply couldn’t find the time to do it but you have that nagging feeling that that pooch you’ve been carrying around that people often mistake you for being pregnant is a diastasis.

Let me save you from the hours of Googling it.  In this article you will know what a Diastasis Recti Abdominis or DRA is and how you can do a DRA test on yourself accurately. We will also talk about - The common DRA symptoms, what causes a diastasis? And most important of all is how to close it.

Welcome to the Belly Blog. I am Julie Tupler, RN creator of the Tupler Technique®. The Tupler Technique® is the only research and evidence based program to treat a diastasis recti. I have been teaching the Tupler Technique® for over 20 years! My purpose for this blog is twofold. The first is to educate people about all the aspects of a diastasis recti and the second is to answer your questions about the Tupler Technique® Program. Please feel free to post comments, questions, and your own personal stories on this blog.

 

Hernia

What exactly is Diastasis Recti Abdominis?

 

The term diastasis means separation. Diastasis recti is the separation of the outmost abdominal muscles or rectus abdominis. What occurs is that the connective tissue that holds the muscles together are stretched sideways causing the condition.

It is very common among pregnant and postpartum women. This is because the growing baby inside the uterus stretches the muscles and connective tissue in the abdomen.

According to researches I have read, diastasis recti abdominis or DRA is a condition that more than two thirds  of pregnant and postpartum women suffer from but, in my experience working with thousands of women both pregnant and new moms, it even goes as many as 98%.  The sad thing about it is it goes basically ignored and dismissed as a negligible cosmetic condition by the medical community. 

 

If you want to learn about the most frequently asked questions about DRA click here.

 

How to test for diastasis recti?

I cannot stress more how important it is to test for diastasis recti accurately.  A lot of people test their diastasis the wrong way which makes then think that it's so small that it can be ignored.  This will then make it worse because they continue to do the things that aggravate the condition.

Watch the video below to get a detailed and visual explanation on how to test yourself for DRA.

 

 

Click here toGet The e-Guidebook now!about Diastasis recti and  the Tupler Technique® Program

This complimentary eGuidebook covers:

  • Summary of theTupler Technique® Program
  • How the Program Works
  • How to check for a diastasis
  • Tips on splinting the separated muscles
  • Exercise tips for the seated and back lying exercises
  • Other useful tips

  Better Belly

 

What are the common DRA symptoms?

The most common and clearly visible symptom of a severe diastasis is an unusual bulging belly, especially when you contract the muscles in the abdominal area. 

 

Symptoms may also include a protruding or outie belly button. It may not yet be obvious at the beginning of your pregnancy while your abdominal muscles start to separate when your belly steadily enlarges and gives room for the baby to grow inside the uterus.  But usually during the 3rd trimester of your pregnancy you will begin to see a bulge either above or below your belly button.

 

The bulge is most visible when you use your ab muscles in trying to sit or stand up, or lie down. For those women who have already given birth, it is that continuous pregnant look because of a belly that is still large. 

 

An’ outy’ or one that looks swollen is another sign that you have muscle separation although this is not definite. You can still have a Diastasis with an ‘inny’ as in the first picture!

What causes a diastasis?

A diastasis is caused by a continuous stretching in both a forward and sideways direction of the connective tissue that joins the outermost muscles. This stretching is caused by pregnancy, weight gain in the abdominal area, abdominal surgery where they fill the abdominal cavity with air, exercises like crunches and Pilates 100, activities where you arch your back like gymnastics and swimming which flare your ribs, and crossover activities like tennis and golf.

Does Diastasis Recti go away?

I have never seen it close on its own in my over 25 years’ experience of testing women during and after pregnancy.  After bearing the first child, it may come together slightly but it will not entirely heal. So on your next pregnancy you would be starting it with a diastasis. With each pregnancy, it will aggravate and get larger.  That is why it is important to do the Tupler Technique® Program especially during your pregnancy.  Closing a diastasis is all about healing the connective tissue. To heal the connective tissue, you have to put both the muscles and connective tissue closer together, protect it from getting stretched and strengthen it.

 

Can you heal Diastasis Recti?

Definitely yes.  You can heal your diastasis postpartum and during pregnancy.

 

Can you heal Diastasis Recti years later?

A diastasis can be closed on anyone at any time. You can prevent and reverse it without surgery.

For more information on this please read my article: Is it too late to close my diastasis?

 

What can the Tupler Technique ® do for your DR?

HEALS THE CONNECTIVE TISSUE BY:

 

  1. Positioning both your connective tissue and muscles.

 

Continuously wearing the Diastasis Rehab Splint® will put it in a narrow position. The splint brings together the separated muscles. This will, in effect, provide the condition for the connective tissues to be unstretched and begin healing. Done together with the Tupler Technique® exercises this will work to strengthen your abdominal muscles. Used with the Together Tape (started in Week 4 of the program after preparing the skin with the Corrective Connective Tissue Cream) the recoiling of the tape after stretched is a communication from the skin to the connective tissue and muscles to move closer together.

 

The muscles need to be close together to move in the right direction when doing the Tupler Technique® seated exercises.

 

  1. Shielding your connective tissue from getting stretched both from a sideways or forwards direction.

 

  1. Strengthen your transverse muscle and the connective tissue with the Tupler Technique® exercises. The exercises are so easy to do, you can even do these while you are driving.

 

 

WEARING A SPLINT IS NOT ENOUGH TO CLOSE YOUR DIASTASIS. YOU MUST FOLLOW ALL FOUR STEPS OF THE TUPLER TECHNIQUE®

The 4 steps are:

  1. Tupler Technique® exercises (Elevator, Contracting and optional Head lifts) If you do just the seated exercises you will be just as successful with the program.
  2. Wearing a Diastasis Rehab Splint® (in Week 4, we double splint, which is wearing a splint and holding another splint (scarf) while doing the exercises)
  3. Developing “transverse awareness” with activities of daily living
  4. Getting up and down correctly

For a more detailed explanation on this see: Diastasis recti and the Tupler Technique®

 

Listen to what a client has to say:

 

 

 

Click here to consult the nearest Tupler Technique® Trained professionals near you now.