Following delivery and the "all clear" from the OBGYN, most women are looking to get back into a fitness routine to lose the baby weight, especially along their midsection or tummy.
Unfortunately, when getting cleared from the doctor there isn't much information or guidelines on returning to an exercise routine. A quick google search can tell you to stay away from traditional crunches, sit-up's, intense abdominal exercise machines, double leg raises, or planking exercises. But did you know there are also daily activities that could be making your diastasis recti worse or even prevent you or delay your healing???
1. You may already be doing exercises to heal your Diastasis recti, but if you continue to sit with poor posture, it could take longer to heal or close the gap. When you sit with a nice long posture (imagine a string pulling you up from the top of your head), you can engage the deep core muscles better and therefore strengthen them in a functional position, which is what you ultimately want!
2. Bearing down when using the bathroom causes an increase in abdominal pressure. An increase in pressure pushes out on your stomach and can cause an even greater separation. Try your best to relax everything, especially your pelvic floor, when using the ladies room. Try to elevate your feet - a small step stool will do the trick, to open the pelvic canal. Once you are relaxed and the pelvic canal is open, peristalsis (aka involuntary contractions) of the intestinal track will do the job for you, no pushing necessary!