Five Quick Facts About ‘Rectus Diastasis’ Or ‘Abdominal Separation’

What is Rectus Diastatsis?

The increased distance between the bellies of the Rectus Abdominus muscle to allow for the enlarging uterus.


Based on current research, 70-100% of women develop abdominal separation in pregnancy.

When does it occur?

Generally between the 2nd and 3rd trimesters.

Can anything be done to minimise it during pregnancy?

– Sit ups are not advised during pregnancy

– Tubigrip / Maternity belts can hold the uterus in towards the spine rather than pull forward

– Appropriate exercises prescribed by your Women’s Health Physio can help you to activate the right abdominal and pelvic floor muscles to also support the uterus.

What can be done Post-Natally after your baby is born?

– Abdominal support devices, such as Tubigrips and Pregnancy Recovery Shorts, may help reduce abdominal separation post-natally although concrete evidence for any long-term effect from these devices is lacking. Some women like the feeling of compression these supports provide after having a baby.

– Appropriate exercises and advice prescribed by your Women’s Health Physio are an important part of recovery to help with abdominal separation through knowing what and what not to do.

It is important to get your Women’s Health Physiotherapist to check your abdominal separation during your pregnancy. Come and see Bonnie our Women’s Health Physiotherapist at Bend + Mend in Sydney’s CBD.

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