It’s been well more than a few days, but I’m back with how I worked to heal my diastasis recti (DR).
First, it’s hard to say these are “exercises” for me, as they really aren’t. They’re just part of healthy, natural movement that most Westernized people have completely omitted from their lives. Integrating them back into our daily living is no more “exercise” than adding meat back into someone’s diet is a “medicine” : it’s just adding in a vital component to health and longevity.
You could take a quick detour to my favorite, short Katy Bowman article, that summarizes nicely why “exercise” is overrated to me: My Manifesto.
That said, I understand that the word “exercise” symbolizes “more movement” for a lot of people, and so I continue to use it for now. (By the way, “exercise” is way less movement than you think, compared to “non-exercisers.”)
Second, and on to what you were waiting for, the Restorative Exercises that were integral to healing my DR were small changes built up over time.
The first change I made was keeping my pelvis untucked (when in doubt, stick your butt out), making sure my ASIS (anterior superior iliac spine) and pubic bones were in a vertical line with one another. This prevents the bulk of your weight bearing down on your sacrum when sitting and walking.
The next change (and very soon after the first change) was relaxing my ribs down, rather than puffing out. Relaxing your ribs down holds your organs in, whereas puffing them out allows your internal organs to fall forward, stressing the two sides of your rectus abdominis muscle.
The first two changes were the most important to make, in terms of diastasis recti, because it’s the “walls of defense” to keeping our guts where they belong.
After this, I shifted my weight off of the tiny bones of my foot, the toes, and into the bigger bones of the heel.
And… I WALK!
I found early on with my hypothyroidism, that hard and fast movements deplete me for days. The simple act of walking keeps lymph flowing, keeps muscles active, and engages much more than the average person would think!
Better still, in the last month before my gap closed from one finger-width to completely, I did a different Snack (or Aligned & Well DVD on weekend days) every single day for the month of June. The natural movement variation in these videos helped my “mummy tummy” go away completely.
If you’d like some excellent pointers in picture form, and more of the why, Diastasis Rectified has written an excellent blog post with exactly why and how I do this.