It should come as no surprise that pregnancy can pull quite a number on a woman’s body. The weight gain, the hormonal changes, the carrying a nine pound bowling ball in your belly – these things all add up and can change a few things anatomically. One very common after effect of pregnancy is diastasis when the top layer of abdominals, the rectus abdominis, separate by pulling away from the center line of the body known as the linea alba.
While that may sound painful, the muscles slowly stretch and separate over the course of the nine months so there really is no pain involved. The pain actually may occur sometime later, in the form of back pain since the spine relies on strong abdominals for support.
Diastasis is fairly common and the muscles will come together on their own about 6 months after labor. Post pregnancy, it is considered healed/normal when only 2 fingers fit in the gap between the abs. Working the deep abdominals, primarily the transversus abdominis, TVA, is your best bet for strengthening your abs and reducing the gap. The TVA pulls all 4 layers of abdominal muscles toward the spine and in essence fills in the gap created by the diastasis. By working the deep abs you can decrease the gap!
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