We talked in our last article about what abdominal separation is. Now we go a little further and take a look at how you can do a little check for yourself to see if you have any separation or not. Do keep in mind not to ‘diagnose’ anything for yourself, however, this will give you a good guide as to what you might be experiencing post-baby. The very best way for you to know where you are at would be to make an appointment with an experienced Women’s Health Physio for assessment and guidance.
Here is a step-by-step guide to checking yourself for abdominal separation:
Lie down on your back, knees bent and feet flat on the floor, shoulders relaxed
Place two fingers just below your belly button
Slowly roll your shoulders off the floor into a mini sit-up (avoid over tensing your tummy muscles)
Using your two fingers feel the gap between your two rectus abdominus
Measure the gap below your belly button then repeat above and up to your rib cage
You should also feel for the floor in your separation, as depth is as important as width.
If there is no floor or it is very spongy and deep (sometimes you can feel right down to your organs), it may be more severe than if you can feel separation but there is no depth at all i.e. your abdominal wall is right there, strong despite any gap.
You can also visit my YouTube channel for my how-to guide to check your own abdominal separation.
When you decide to embark upon a fitness routine yourself it is important that you know if you have any separation, although having said that I believe that whether you have any or not you should begin by re-building from the inside out.
We check all of our new mums for separation in all of our classes and also monitor your progress. If you would like to find out more about how you might work with us or if you have any questions or feedback please send us an email and mention this article.
Mum-focused author, educator and business owner, Jen Dugard is on a mission to ensure every woman is safely and effectively looked after when she becomes a mother. She is a highly qualified trainer and fitness professional educator and has been specialising in working with mums for over a decade. MumSafe is the go-to place online for women to find mum-focused fitness services that are all accredited, experienced and partnered with women’s health physios so you know you are in very safe hands.