How to Test for Diastasis Recti
We will be testing for TWO things.
We will be testing to see how WIDE the gap is and how DEEP the gap is.
These will tell us if we have DR!
How Do We Test for it?
- First, you will lay on your back with your knees bent and feet flat on the floor.
- Next, draw an imaginary line straight down from your sternum past your belly button and to your pelvic bone.
- **You will test along this line!
- Carefully exhale all the way while drawing your belly button in towards your spine to contract your abdominal muscles, while also lifting your head off the floor.
- (This is like you are about to do a crunch, but leave your lower shoulder blades on the floor.)
- You will hold this position throughout the entire test!!
- Take two fingers, usually your index and middle finger of your dominant hand, and press down into your belly along that imaginary line, starting right below your sternum.
- You should feel a little valley between your abdominal muscles.
- Feel how wide the gap is between your two abdominal muscles.
- How many fingers can you fit in that gap (valley)?
- Is the gap 1 finger, 2 fingers, 3 fingers or wider??
- Repeat this test all along that imaginary line
- Take note if you have a gap that is wider than 2 fingers.
- Also, take note of how DEEP your fingers go…here we are testing the integrity of the connective tissue, the linea alba.
- You want your fingers to meet firm end feel in the tissue and not sink down into ‘squishy’ tissue.
- Take note if your fingers sink deeper than the first knuckle on your finger, or if you have difficulty finding ‘firm tissue’ when you press down.
- Once you make your way all the way down from your sternum to your pubic bone, you have completed the test!!
Click the link below to download a quick video of where to test!
So how do we know if we have DR?
- If you found a spot that was a solid two fingers or wider, then you probably have DR.
- If you find a spot where the tissue doesn’t have a ‘firm’ or solid end-feel…As in, you never feel a firm bottom to the valley in between your abdominal muscles, then you might have DR.
- If you DON’T have DR, then great!!
- If you are suffering from low back pain, pelvic pain, hip pain, incontinence, or feel like you have significant weakness in your core, then I suggest seeking out your local pelvic floor therapist to get it sorted out quickly!
- If you DO have DR, then great!
- I say that because being aware of how your body is functioning is the first step in becoming as functional and independent as you want to be!
- There are some positions that you want to avoid before healing your DR. A short list of those would be:
- Plank position
- Push-up position
- Leg lifts/lowers while lying on your back
- Bicycle Crunches
- Deep backbends
- ANY position that causes your belly to ‘tent’ or ‘puff’ out
- There are some easy exercises that you can start to implement into your daily routine that will help draw that gap back together and strengthen your deep abdominal muscles to heal your DR!
- Stay tuned for these. I will make a post soon that runs through a few of the simple exercises for y’all!
- ALWAYS, I recommend you seek out the help of your local pelvic floor therapist! They can always make sure that there isn’t anything else going on that needs to be addressed!!
- But, I do know that not everyone has the access or time to seek out therapy services, so I hope this can be of service to y’all!!
BUT, don’t worry; there are plenty of ways to work on it!!
***If your gap is greater than 3 fingers or you had trouble finding any resistance in your connective tissue, I would suggest going to a Women’s Health or Pelvic Floor Physical Therapist, because they can safely take you through the correct progression of recovery to give you the best results!!
Stay Tuned for the post on different exercises for DR!!
Would y’all like some videos posted on here to help with these things?!