This necessary separation is caused by the growing uterus and the hormone, relaxin, which softens smooth muscle. While it is a necessary function we can prevent the severity of the diastasis during pregnancy through correct posture, exercise and nutrition. However the body shape, size of baby and positioning of baby can also affect your individual diastasis.
What happens when the muscles are separated is that your core system can’t function properly and provide stability for your torso and pelvis – as your rectus abdominis is compromised during pregnancy ( virtually inactive).
Once you have had your baby it is important to asses you DR – it is recommended that you record the widest part of the DR, the length, depth and the feel of the connective tissue ( the linea alba) – in fact how the connective tissue feels IS one of the most important aspects when it comes to healing and not to get caught up on the the ‘gap’. I would recommend you have a trained professional in women’s health ( a women’s health physiotherapist or someone who has the necessary qualifications, like myself) do this initially for you – mainly because if you don’t know what you are looking for it’s easy to be misguided. Even if you have slight DR it is essential that you embark on diastasis recovery program.