Part 3- Preventing Diastasis Recti in Pregnancy

This is the final post in a three part series on how to minimize and protect your abdominal muscles from developing diastasis recti.

In the other two posts we talked about how rib thrusting and forward, forceful movements of your belly can contribute to development of diastasis recti.  See these posts here to review, part 1 and part 2.

There is one other motion that we do at least two times a day, more if you are getting up to empty your squished bladder in the middle of the night, which causes the greatest strain on our abdominal muscles.  That is the way we get up and down from laying down.  What most of us tend to do is just lay straight back down and jackknife straight on up to sit up from laying down.  This motion puts the greatest amount of strain on your abdominal muscles.  If you continually get up and down this way, your abdominal muscles will have the potential for greater separation.

There is a better way to lay down and get up without straining your abdominal muscles.

Laying Down Correctly

Let’s start with laying down.  Sitting on the side of the bed you want to pull your belly button back to your spine and then lay down on your side while your legs come up onto the bed.  Next, and the most important step, is placing your head down on the pillow while on your side.  Then contract your belly again as you roll over onto your back.

To get back up, the most important step is the keep your head down on the pillow while you roll over.  If you lift your head you are essentially doing a crunch and your belly will pooch out or dome if there is any separation.

During this entire motion, it is important to contract your abdominal muscles by pulling your belly backward toward your spine.  Remember your head is the most important step and should be the last thing down in lying down and the last part up in getting up.

This takes practice to remember how to do it correctly and to make it a habit.  You will want to continue to lie down and get up in this fashion well after your baby is born.  This can help heal any separation you may have in your abdominal muscles after your baby is born.

There are other steps you need to learn to heal a diastasis recti if you have one.  There is one simple stretch that can really facilitate any healing of separation of your abdominal muscles after birth.  You can learn how to do it by doing the Confidence in your Core, Pelvic Floor and More online program. Check it out!