Diastasis Recti Test + Exercises | What Works + What To Avoid


Diastasis-Recti | MuTu System | COPYRIGHTED IMAGE

Diastasis Recti, also referred to as ‘Divarication of the Recti’ or ‘Rectus Divarification’, is the widening of the gap between the 2 sections of the Rectus Abdominis (or 6 pack) abdominal muscle. The split occurs at the Abdominal Raphe (Linea Alba and Linea Semiluniaris), the mid-line collagen structures of connective tissue at the front of the abdomen.

100% of women have some level of diastasis of the rectus abdominis in the third trimester.(Gilliard and Brown 1996, Diane Lee 2013)

Importantly, for many women the gap remains widened at 8 weeks, and left untreated, this distance at 8 weeks remains unchanged at 1 year postpartum. (Coldron et al 2008, Liaw et al 2011)

66% of women with diastasis recti have some level of pelvic floor dysfunction (Spitznagle et al 2007). Diastasis recti and pelvic floor problems tend to go together.

The Abdominal Raphe (seam of tissue structures that form the meeting point of the 2 sides of all the core musculature) no longer provides tension and stability. Because ALL the muscles of the abdomen- Transversalis, internal and external obliques, as well as Rectus Abdominis – meet at this centre midline, all are compromised, meaning that this lack of protection and stability affects the whole body both aesthetically and functionally.


You may see a ‘pooching’ or ‘doming’ of your stomach, especially when coming up from a lying position on your back. Sometimes you appear still a few months pregnant. As well as the aesthetic concerns, diastasis recti is associated with a weak core (and pelvic floor), leading to a lack of strength and stability in the entire pelvic region and midsection.


Diastasis Recti is the result of excessive intra-abdominal pressure or loading. It is common in the later stages of pregnancy, particularly second or subsequent pregnancies. It is important to note though, that pregnancy does not cause a diastasis. It is simply that the increased load and further shifts in alignment of pregnancy exacerbate the root problem – that of excessive, ‘un-contained’ intra abdominal pressure.

The Rectus Abdominis is only 1 of 4 layers of abdominal muscles: the Transverse Abdominis (deepest muscle layer) the Interior and Exterior Obliques (next 2 layers) that form your waist, and then the Rectus Abdominis is on the outside.

Unfortunately when the 2 parts of the muscle separate or come apart, the connective mid-line is stretched and weakened as it takes all other muscular and fascial support structures along with it. This leaves the front of the abdomen unsupported and unstable. The Raphe is designed to be taut, at full length and aligned in a vertical (breastbone to pubic bone) plane. But it cannot perform or function optimally when alignment is ‘out’. So it’s alignment we need to address to address a diastasis!

Diastasis Recti is a symptom of excessive and unsupported intra abdominal pressure, the same state that creates other pelvic and abdominal problems including hernia and prolapse. DR should therefore be treated as part of an integrated program designed to re-align, re-connect and then strengthen the entire core musculature, rather than be addressed in isolation (and rather than focussing only on ‘closing the gap’).


Lie on your back with your knees bent and your feet flat on the floor. Relax your head and shoulders and place your fingers (palm facing you) just above your belly button.

Lift your head and neck very slightly off the floor and press down with your fingertips. If you feel a gap, that’s the diastasis. You will feel the muscles close in around your fingers as you lift your head and neck. Don’t lift your shoulders. Repeat the test in two other place: directly over the belly button, and a couple of inches below.

A diastasis recti gap is measured in finger width’s. You are aiming for a 1-2 finger gap or less, but don’t panic if it’s much bigger at first.

Even more important than the width of the gap though, is the tension (or lack of tension) in the midline – the linea alba. Contracting the muscles should create tension and resistance to your application of gentle pressure with your fingers to the midline. If it doesn’t – you have some re-connecting to do…


Some advocate wrapping or binding the mid-section to draw the split recti muscles back together. Postpartum abdominal binding has also been traditional practice in many parts of the world for generations.

In my experience, supporting the abdomen during and immediately after pregnancy may be helpful in some cases, and, used correctly, can help with awareness of the abs and for lower back support.

However, wrapping it up tight, pulling the two sides together… won’t make them heal or stay there. Don’t use a wrap or splint as a substitute for actually engaging the right muscles… otherwise you’re going to wearing that splint for a very long time.

Remember the diastasis is caused by inappropriate loading and pressure within the abdominal and pelvic ‘canister’. Loading that your body can’t withstand as it should. Wrapping it up in itself won’t fix it, it will just squidge your abdominal mass in a different direction (think of a tube of toothpaste squeezed in the middle…) You need to correct alignment and re-engage an entire SYSTEM of muscles and fasica to put your tummy back where you want it for the long term.

MuTu System’s recommendation NOT to use a binder or splint to narrow a diastasis recti has been shown to be the anatomically correct approach according to recent research from globally respected Physiotherapist Diane Lee.



MuTu System is for women who want their bodies to look, feel and function better after having a baby. Even if it’s a long time since having a baby.

They want a core and a pelvic floor that work, that feel right and that do their job.

It’s for women who want to lose weight after childbirth and keep it off.

It’s the definitive, medically endorsed Mummy Tummy Workout System, created by postpartum fitness expert, Wendy Powell.

An international best-selling, industry acclaimed, award winning, holistic, realistic and supportive exercise and recovery program for Moms that truly works.

A proven, truly effective, tried and tested solution for ‘mummy tummy’, diastasis recti, pelvic floor weakness and core that isn’t as functional or strong as you’d like it to be.


Crunches, sit-ups, oblique (twists) combined with crunches; anything that  ‘jack-knifes’ the body, by pivoting at the hip and placing strain on the abdominals – such as straight leg lifts or holds from lying on your back and similar Pilates moves.


Activating and engaging your core transverse abdominis muscle and learning to re-align and and strengthen your core and pelvis can be done at any stage postpartum and will improve the gap. If you did a lot of crunches and/or oblique crunches post baby, then you may have developed a ‘cone’ shape on your abdomen where you have worked the muscles hard, but in the wrong direction. You may not bring the muscles right back together, but you can definitely make improvements to strength, stability AND the way your tummy looks!


GetStartedNowFirst, you need to FIND and connect with your deep core muscles. Here’s how: Without raising or tensing your chest or shoulders, GENTLY draw your belly button back towards your spine as you slowly exhale. That’s the right muscle! You’re not ‘sucking in’ or making any forceful or exaggerated movement. Your pelvis shouldn’t tuck under as you do this – in fact nothing should be happening in your shoulders, chest or pelvis! – it is just a subtle drawing in at the lower abs.

You are not… sucking in your stomach, holding your breath, moving your ribs or your shoulders. You’re not tucking your butt / tailbone under you or thrusting your hips – all these pelvic tilts indicate the Transverse is not working – you have to isolate this muscle first and re-connect with it, if it is going to play its vital role in your core and pelvic floor system  again..

You need to correct your ALIGNMENT – the cause of that excessive pressure and loading.

Then you have to learn to ENGAGE  your transverse abdominis and pelvic floor muscles effectively and correctly, not only when  you exercise, but also during every-day movements like lifting, sneezing or twisting. This is a natural, reactive movement which you won’t always have to do consciously! But to re-conenct, to realign and to restore, we isolate at first.

Then you need to STRENGTHEN your transverse abdominis muscle in a way that will draw your rectus abdominis muscle (the six pack, outermost one, the one that has separated) back in together, pulling your belly back in… flatter and stronger.

  • Mhairi

    I’m 4 weeks post emergency section, My tummy is still pretty tender and swollen. I have been advised by my physio that I have a 7 finger gap!!! Arrrgh. My bump was rather large and I also had very limited mobility with SPD for most of my pregnancy, and now I am recovering from both. Can you advise if you have experience of how long (I know it’s not the same for everyone) it might take me to close the gap, which I am sure will then help with the SPD? I don’t think I can wear a splint until my tummy/uterus contracts back down and isn’t so tender?
    thanks for your website, very helpful x

  • http://mutusystem.com/ Wendy Powell

    Hi Mhairi, thanks for your comment – well it sounds like you’ve had a fun pregnancy & birth 😉 Congratulations on your new baby!
    Doing the core activation exercises, combined with pelvic floor, will help with both pelvic stability & with your diastasis. A splint may be helpful with quite a large gap, but it’s not necessary. More important that you start ASAP (even if you can’t feel much going on for while) with the TVA activation. Go easy – everything will be tender for a while. Your gap will have closed quite sigificantly in 8-12 weeks provided you do the activation exercises & ‘zipping up’ a few times every day. Good luck & let me know how you get on!

  • Nazz

    Hi I am 10 months postpartum and it’s my first baby i’v always Been underweight but during pregnancy my weight was normal I weighed about 8 stone but now I’m underweight again but I can’t seem to loose my belly fat I look pregnant i hate being like this. I was seeing a physio for months still couldent help me get rid of it…. I don’t know whether the bladder problem causing or the diastasis recti. my stomach is always hard and big…. But my gap is only one finger wide please help me I don’t want to stay like this all my life please please email me

    • wendy

      Hi Nazz, I need to know more about your situation to really help you… what’s the baldder problem? Who told you it was only 1 finger wide? … There could be a number of factors involved. Email me more detail or give me a call & I’ll try to help :)

  • Nat

    I’m currently 27 weeks pregnant with my first baby and noticed having the “cone-shaped” belly when I sit up in the past few weeks. After researching I’ve realized I’ve been doing all the wrong exercises– like side bends and twists– for my whole pregnancy, so I’m sure I’ve worsened the condition.

    How can I tell how far the separation is when I have bulging instead of a gap to put my fingers in? Should I be doing certain abdominal exercises to keep it from worsening? I’m actually very concerned about this, and my stomach feels a little tender. I would love to be doing something (anything!) to help the condition and to have a plan post partum so I can have a little peace of mind. Right now I’m to scared to do any exercise!

  • http://mutusystem.com wendy

    Hi Nat, First of all, please stop worrying about this during your pregnancy! You cannot test for a diastasis whilst you’re pregnant, & nor should you try to find or ‘close’ a gap that may or may not naturally occur anyway as your pregancy progresses. You should stay away from too many twists (although gentle ones will simply maintain flexibility & are not going to affect a diastasis at this stage).
    Avoid any type of crunch or sit up movement during & after pregnancy, and always get up from lying down by rolling onto your side first, rather than coming straight up from the hip. You could become familair with the feeling of activating your transverse abdominus muscle in conjunction with your pelvic floor (plenty more on this on the blog).
    Please don’t worry, your tummy is tender and protruding because you’re pregnant – nothing more sinister than that :) Enjoy your pregnancy & learn the the TVA / pelvic floor engaging. This movement is one that is essential to maintain good core strength & that will by definition, help to close any gap afterwards.
    Good luck!

    • Nat

      thank you Wendy– You’re right, I shouldn’t be worrying about it so much. My body is changing in so many ways that sometimes it’s just a little shocking!

      I’ll take your advice and focus on the things you mentioned. Thanks again!

  • Wendy Powell

    You’re very welcome – enjoy your pregnancy!

  • Jill

    Wendy — your post is excellent as I have been freaking out about my diastasis….i am 25 weeks pregnant, am 4’10” and tiny, and it is my first pregnancy….and I noticed today a large separation of my abdominals when I tried (foolishly) to get up after lying on my back (instead of rolling on to my side). I was really, really fit before I got pregnant and had a flat stomach, and now i am panicking about how to get back into shape. I keep reading about how diastasis is not curable and unless you have a tummy tuck, you will never have a flat stomach again. Is this truly your experience? I just want a reliable answer, as I keep reading differing opinons. Thank you.

    • Wendy Powell

      Hi Jill, thank-you! Please see my response to Nat’s comment above – you really don’t need to test or worry about diastasis during pregnancy except to know what NOT to do. A diastasis is normal, painless and perfectly ‘curable’. You can’t stop it happening, & nor should you worry about right now! By learning how to correctly engage your deep core muscles (notably transverse abdominus) & pelvic floor, & by understanding the diastasis process, you give yourself all the foundations for a flat post baby stomach! It’s worked for hundreds of my clients & it’s worked for me – I’ve had 2 babies (small frame, big bumps…!) & mine is flat, I promise! Please stop worrying & relax & enjoy your pregnancy :)

      • Jill

        Thank you, Wendy. You are really comforting and reassuring. I appreciate your website and your thoughts…you are helping so many women and we really appreciate it!

  • frank w james

    i am a 59 yr old male with a large beer belly. have been diagnosed with diastasis recti. will the exercises for postpartum ladies help me in the same way.

    thank you

    • http://mutusystem.com/ wendy

      Hi Frank, & welcome, we don’t get many guys on here! Yes, the condition is exactly the same in terms of the muscular changes that have taken place. During pregnancy the female abdomen is obviously pushed out & stretched, with most pressure around the belly button area , causing the rectus muscle to part (a diastasis recti) – exactly the same is true of your beer belly. The split rectus abdominus muscle is just the same in your body as in a woman’s, & the same thing has occurred.
      The only difference is with pregnancy the rpessure is coming from INSIDE, or behind, the muscle, whereas in your case excess fat OUTSIDE the muscle is causing the strain. In both cases your core muscles are weakened & your spine unsupported.
      You need to do the exercises recommended for activating the transverse muscle & improving your core strength, which will pull the rectus muscles back together, as the TVA comes back in.
      Oh, & you also need to lose the excess flab which is pushing your tummy out in the first place! 😉 So make sure you check out the food sections on here too. Good luck!

  • wkr

    Hi! My story is almost identical to ‘Nazz’s’. I’ve struggled with gaining weight my entire life. My daughter just turned 1 a few weeks ago and I’ve suspected that I have Diastasis Recti for several months now. I only weigh 95lbs but I have a saggy gut that makes me look like I’m 5 months pregnant! Not cool…
    I gained about 50 lbs while pregnant and my daughter was 9lb 4oz. So for my little frame, that was huge! (And my belly button is shot…) I’ve been looking to buy the Tupler system…I’m desperate to get rid of this belly!

  • http://mutusystem.com/ wendy

    Hi there, The Tupler book will talk you through the diastasis part of the problem, but my MuTu System which is going to be available as a downloadable coaching programme (with a new video every week for 12 weeks as well as the complete System document… which includes correcting a Diastasis recti…) will give you EVERYTHING you need! Sign up for the newsletter in the right hand column just below the welcome box & you’ll be informed as soon as it comes out!

    The outie belly button, the saggy tummy despite a small frame & weight loss everywhere else all indicate a diastasis for sure. Combined with weak core muscles & pelvic floor muscles, this is resulting in your tummy looking the way it does – don’t worry you can repair it & pull everything back in! Check out all the advice on this site & grab your MuTu System download very soon 

  • Nerea

    Hi Wendy: I don´t know why but I can´t read the post that is called “The mummy tummy masterclass explained”. There must be a problem. Can you help me?

    Thank you

  • http://mutusystem.com toni

    Hi Wendy,

    I am 52 years old and have had 2 c-sections 24 years ago. I did the test and I do have diastasis recti can doing the excersises repair my muscles.


    • Wendy Powell

      Hi Toni, It’s never too late to make a difference! Strengthening your core muscles & doing the exercises in the MuTu System will bring the gap together & flatten your tummy. Your muscles are simply inactive &/or weak – they can be brought back to life regardless of how long ago you had your babies.

  • Alicia

    Hello Wendy. I first noticed a protruding “hill” from just below my ribs to my umbilicus 7 years ago when I was 3 months pregnant with my first child. It never went away and has gotten a bit bigger since my 2nd child who is now almost 3. Im a nursing student and we learned about Diastasis Recti and I finally knew what was wrong with me. I have been doing all the wrong exercises and wondering why my abs never looked normal. I do not have the finger widths because mine is protruding. Its not very noticeable unless I am working out or leaning in certain directions. Are the exercises the same for us women with this problem? I am not over weight and work out regularly, but have never been able to get my before babies stomach back. When I become a labor and delivery nurse, I am going to make it a priority to tell my patients about this problem. I sure wish someone had told me about it 7 years ago. Thank you for any info you can give.

    • http://www.mutusystem.com wendy powell

      Hi Alicia, Do send your patients to my download won’t you? 😉 If the protrusion is very tender, then it could be a hernia as well as a diastasis, but if not, then a diastasis is what it is & yes, all these recommendations apply. You will be able to measure the gap from a supine position but the key is to have your shoulders & neck relaxed on the floor as you start to take the measurement. The mistake many women make trying to measure their gap is to have the neck & shoulders already raised (ie the rectus muscle is already tensed & protruding) when they try to measure…
      If it is noticeable whilst you’re exercising, then the exercises you’re doing are making it worse :( (Sorry!) Correctly engaged, the muscle will hollow the abdomen, not make it pooch out. The MuTu System gives you all the details, self tests & corrective exercises.
      I hope this helps! Wendy

  • Ness

    Hello. Thank you for all of the information on this website. I have a question about the diastasis. I am pretty sure that if I got the diastasis while I was pregnant with my son that I closed it enough because I am not feeling a huge gap but do think that I got the diastasis (my son is now 19 months), anyway, my question is that I am now 10 weeks pregnant and would like to keep my body fit as possible during pregnancy but want to avoid diastasis. Is it safe to exercise my abs and still avoid getting diastasis this time? or am I more likely to get diastasis by not exercising?

    • Wendy Powell

      Hi Ness, You’re welcome! Whilst you’re pregnant, there is no benefit to testing yourself or worrying about a diastasis… if it’s going to happen, it’s going to happpen. And it’s perfectly natural & normal, so don’t worry about it! What you can do though, is AVOID the type of movement & exercises that will make a diastasis worse, like crunches; and DO the exercises described in the pregnancy sections here, to engage & strengthen your transverse abdominus & pelvic floor muscles. That way you give your abs the best chance of coping & recovering afterwards.
      But pregnancy is no time to be poking around looking for the gap – there’s a baby in there who needs to grow, if he/she needs the room, your muscles will part & that’s the way Mother Nature built us! Good luck :)

  • B Jensen

    I am very curious about Diastasis Recti. I have had 13 live births and I am 51 now the baby is 8. I am having seriouse digestive problems and discomfort when I eat especially in the evening. Hiatal Hernia, Gallbladder, diverticulitis, all ruled out, CT scan done, fine. I am starting to think this is my problem. I have also noticed that if I sweep the floor and twist I feel something kind of catch under my rib on either side in the center by the sternum. I was wondering what would be safe to do. I do have the seperation from the sternum all the way down, but it is just now starting to give me grief. I am very active and just did a triathalon, I am 4′ 10″ and weigh 99 pounds. But I am looking for answers. Thanks

    • Wendy Powell

      Did you mean to write 13 births? Wow. I’m very impressed!! This sounds like it could be a combination of digestive issues along with a diastasis… the discomfort after eating will be digestion -related I expect, the pain on twisting could be assocated with a diastasis &/or muscle strain / poor posture… Twisting & straining the trunk will certainly cause problems with a very weak or unsupported core. To be honest it’s hard to say without a proper assessment… if you would like to arrange a consultation I may be able to help more.

  • Folusho

    Hi Wendy,

    This is a site i have been looking for,i am desperate to get my diastasis recti closed,i have been trying to work it out on my own for a while now,but no improvement ,i had it when i gave birth to my boy 8 months ago,is there any way you can help?,would love to be part of your programme,please help me.


    • Wendy Powell

      Hi Folusho, I can definitely help! Thanks for your consultation request – I’ll call you tomorrow & we’ll get you on your way!

  • Amie

    Hi Wendy,
    I hope your website will help me!! I am sure I have a diastis. My son is almost 2 1/2 and my stomach is still not flat…at all. i have always been small (about 100 lbs) and always had a flat stomach. During my pregnancy, i gained ~24 lbs. I am back to my pre-pregnancy weight but 2 1/2 years later, i still feel that i look 4 months pregnancy and i am so sick of this. Please can you help me??!!I have about a 2 1/2 finger tip separation. Thank you!

    • Wendy Powell

      Amie I promise you are not alone – this is probably partly due to a diastasis but other factors come into play too. Download the free reports (button top right above my picture!). Then if you want to talk personally, just fill out the form for a free consultation. Happy to help :)

    • Asdf

      Amie, you may have a severe rectus distasis.  I’m currently going through that right now.  I have a 10 cm gap, and according to doctors surgery is the only way to go.  I look like i’m 4-5 months pregnant as well. 

  • Michelle

    I”m confused on how to check for diastasis. I”m 8 weeks postpartum I checked today and initially when pressing only slightly with my fingers my separating is 1 finger, when I press harder with my figures I press apart the two recti and can fit many more fingers (I didn’t see how many as it scared me!) I did figure I have more than 1 finger as I sometimes see my stomach coning out or tenting out when I flex it) please let me know how much pressure i should be using.

    Also i know that I should not wear a baby bjorn but how about a cuddlewrap or a wrap sling? Is this also harmful for my rectus diastasi?


    • Wendy Powell

      Hi Michelle, the most common problem when checking is that you are pressing down whilst your head & shoulders are tensed & raised (You’re probably trying to see what you’re doing…) Your head & shouders need to be completely relaxed & flat on the floor as you press your fingers down. THEN raise your head slightly. The gap is the distance at rest. So if you don’t feel the muscles close in on your fingers right away, lie your head back down & try 3 or 4 fingers width. You need to aply pressure but it shouldn’t hurt.
      Baby carrying is fine in my opinion but you MUST have adequate back support & engage your core muscles as you carry. The danger is that the weight of your baby simply pulls down & forwards on your shoulders at the front & applies added force & pressure to a weak tummy & a diastasis. Use firm back support, have baby close in to you (not pulling you down at the front) stand up straight, engage your core muscles & carry strong. If you can’t do any of the above, then your core is not strong enough to carry in this way / you need to close the diastasis first. The MuTu System programme will show you how – fill out the form for a free consultation if you want more help!

  • Moira

    Hi I have recently had a paraumbilical hernia repaired and my recti muscles brought partially back together with supporting mesh as part of the procedure. This was all post pregnancy related after I developed diastasis recti. Now I am wanting to tone up again post-recovery are the techniques you teach suitable to apply in my situation. Can you advise?

    • Wendy Powell

      Hi Moira, yes, absolutely. The op you’ve had has repaired the hernia & the gap… but the muscles now need to be strengthened. The mesh will hold the 2 parts of the muscle together but it won’t give you core strength or a flat tummy – that’s where MuTu System comes in! You can fill in the form for a consultation to discuss specifics if you like, but this would be perfect for you! :)

  • Holly

    Hi, I had my second child 10 months ago. I noticed my diastasis is about 3 fingers wide under my naval and for the last few month it has hurt when I press on it or sit up, but there is no protrusion. I had 2 c-sections and my abdominals were quite weak before I got pregnant the second time. I just wanted to know if pain is normal with diastasis?

    • Wendy Powell

      Hi Holly, no in theory a diastasis shouldn’t hurt in itself, but it could be tender if you are pressing down firmly or exerting intra-abdominal pressure (pushing the weak muscles outward – as when sitting up straight from lying on your back) on already very weak muscles. At least start rolling to your side first when getting up from bed or the floor, to avoid more outward pressure on these weak muscles… The MuTu System would really help you strengthen them & relieve the pressure & discomfort – do let me know if you want more advice, or if you want to get a free consultation online just click ‘free consultation at the very top right of the page!

  • Ana

    Hi. After my second child almost 3 years ago, I noticed that I had lost my belly button and the weird stomach shape. (this BTW was my second C-Section). I thought that I could get my stomach back in shape just like I did after I gave birth to my first child. However, it has not improved by getting worse. I am 5.4″ and my weight average 117, though my stomach looks huge, slit in half and no belly button. I visited my general doctor and he said I had an umbilical hernia very small around my belly button. I saw a cosmetic surgeon who not only confirmed the same but mentioned to me about this abdominal split and that the only way to correct this was doing a tummy tuck. No matter what, I have to have surgery but the tummy tuck looks very invasive. I heard that hernias can go back if the diastasis is not corrected. Any advice? Can I still get rid of the diastasis with special exercises after 3 years of giving birth? It looks like I have been doing the wrong abs exercises and I have very hard split muscles in my stomach with a little hernia in the middle.


    • Anonymous

      Hi Ana, a hernia may ‘pop back in’ with corrective exercise but it’s not going to be really resolved without surgery. A diastasis is not the same as a hernia – with a diastasis your organs will appear to protrude through the gap, BUT they are held back with a layer of tissue (albeit thin & weakened tissue). A hernia is an actual hole or tear in the abdominal wall & exercise cannot repair it. Yes, you can improve a diastasis even years after childbirth, & it sounds like inappropriate exercises have made the situation worse & will also have contributed to your hernia by exerting intra-abdominal pressure which has made both the diastasis & the hernia worse… The MuTu System can DEFINITELY help you with all the compromised muscle tone & the diastasis. But the hernia should be dealt with surgically to ensure the best end result for you. I hope that clarifies things for you!

  • Jill

    Hi Wendy – I just wanted to thank you so much for your excellent website and your reassurance during my pregnancy. I had a healthy baby boy who is now 7 months old. With some hard work and lots of pelvic floor exercises, my stomach is nearly back to normal. I am THIRLLED!!! You are a wonderful resource and I am appreciative of your support!!! Thank you!

    • http://mutusystem.com Wendy Powell

      Congratulations Jill! And thankyou for your lovely comments about the website! :)

  • TOmbraider98

    Hi Wendy,

    This website is basically what I have been searching the internet for!  As a new mom of a 5 month old baby boy, I was recently told by my physician that I have diastasis recti. I was in a state of shock since pre-pregnancy I was 5’9″ and about 140 lbs and I have been exercising my entire life; always paying special attention to my abdominals.  About 2 months after I gave birth I had suspected that I may have one but the physician who delivered my son said otherwise.  About a month ago I went to my general physician who upon examination said I most certainly did have a seperation.  Although he diagnosed me, he was a little unclear about what I needed to do in order to make sure it gets properly closed.  I have searched high and low on the internet for a site like yours.  So glad I found you.  My question now to you is how will I know if my seperation is now properly closed?  When I do the test that you have on the video, I barely have a one finger seperation but at the same time I do still have a bulge when I attempt to do a crunch.  I also have noticed that when I lie down or sometimes even when I am standing my belly button sinks into my stomach.  Is this normal?  And if my separation is closed when can I do exercises to strengthen and flatten my stomach so I can get back to normal? Any help or advice you can provide would be much appreciated. Thank you so much.

    Kristy from Brooklyn

    • http://mutusystem.com Wendy Powell

      Hey Kristy, thanks so much for the compliments! I am away running workshops for a few days so can’t respond properly from a computer but I’ll do that soon. Meanwhile, look at the ‘download the program’ page for more explanation. Pls could you email your email address? (use the contact option or dm me on Twitter (@mutusystem). Speak soon x

  • Janet

    Hey wendy Im a mom of 3 .
    11,5,2 and since my 2year old I have been eating great working out and Ive lost a total of 70 pounds but my stomach while it has gone down quite a bit since losing weight its definalty not flat, I so desperatly need help its brought down my self esteem so much, while my husband whos always complementing me is wonderful , I look more to the flaw of my stomach than how much I actually lost.
    Is there anything I can do please help!!

    • http://mutusystem.com Wendy Powell

      Hi Janet, it is almost definitely a diastasis that is causing your stomach to pooch out if you have lost the extra weight everywhere else & are eating healthily… The MuTu Core & MuTu Breathe aspects of the MuTu System programme would definitely help you. You need to test for a diastasis gap to establish how wide it is. You need to immediately stop doing any form of crunches or sit ups, including any twisting / oblique variations of these moves. I would also recommend you omit the Plank from your exercise regime for now until the gap has narrowed to 2 fingers or less. MuTu Core & MuTu Breathe work to rebuild strength on the inside & to narrow the diastasis gap… only then can your tummy lie flat on top of the musculature. Don’t be disheartened – I know it’s hard when you’re working so much & not seeing the results you want. But I assure you there is simply a ‘missing link ‘ in your exercise regime – & that’s taking care of your midsection! If you decide to download the MuTu System, make sure you follow MuTu Core & MuTu Breathe particularly, daily for the next few weeks & contact me anytime using the envelope (up there on the right) if you’re not sure if you’re getting it right! :)

    • http://mutusystem.com Wendy Powell

      Hi Janet, I’m so sorry for the delay repsonding to you, I lost some comments! Firstly your husband is right to focus on all the gorgeous bits & not the so-called-flaws (he’s a Keeper ;)! But yes, there is something you can do. Your stomach won’t lie flat whilst your core muscles are weak & so not supporting & stabalising your spine, whilst you have a diastasis, or whilst there is a lot of c-section scar tissue. All or any of these factors will stop your tummy lying flat. But all of these can be improved with the right exercise & you will be able to see the results of your other exercise & healthy eating! MuTu System will give you the missing links to your current regime!

  • Jasmine

    Hi Wendy – thank you so much for your website, its very informative and reading these comments helps tremendously.  I have a small frame, have been a dancer my whole life and was recently diagnosed with diastasis (3 finger width gap) at 30 weeks.  I’m now almost 32 weeks and clearly the gap will continue to widen before delivery.  I’ve been doing my pelvic floor exercises everyday and wearing a belly band but I’m wondering about the actual labour and birth itself.  I’ve been trying so hard not to use my abs but obviously that can’t be avoided while pushing a baby out?  Do you have any advice regarding this?  Also, I’m just wondering if you would know (given your experience) how wide my gap might become by the time I deliver?  Perhaps a silly question to ask?  Many thanks, Jasmine. 

    • http://mutusystem.com Wendy Powell

      Hello Jasmine, firstly apologies as below to Janet – you all disappeared off my radar for a few days there! Thankyou for your comments about the site, it’s wonderful to know the MuTu System site is helping! Your gap will do what it’s going to do… your body is just making room for baby in there & that’s the priority right now :) I wouldn’t worry about wearing a belly band at this stage – let your pregnancy run its course & enjoy it! But there are things you can do (or avoid) to give you the best chance of staying strong & stable & for a quick recovery! Follow the guidelines on the site about what not to do – obviously no sit ups (I do hope you’re not doing those at 32 weeks pregnant!) but also make sure you roll to the side every time you get up from lying down – don’t curl straight up or ‘jack knife your body at all. Use the sides of the bath tub to pull yourself up (this tends to be the one place we can’t avoid rolling straight up from our backs unless you have a very large bath!). Don’t avoid using your abs – they need to be strong – practice the ‘navel to spine’ to activate transverse abdominis & work on coordinating this will pelvic floor lifts. Obviously you’re not going to be able to pull your navel back / flatten your stomach, but getting used to this feeling will stand you in good stead. Read the pelvic floor sections too as this is a vital component of core work & belly flattening whihc is often neglected… & of course make sure you download the MuTu System program so you’re all set after baby comes! Good luck & wishing you well for the coming weeks!

  • Carissima D

    Hello Wendy,

    I have a similar case to Jasmine who wrote in to your site –
    I have always been petite, danced, and exercised (dance, yoga and martial arts) and was in fairly great shape before getting pregnant. i had a very flat, 6 pack stomach before getting pregnant but never did much crunches or sit-ups or weights, just moving the body through above mentioned exercise forms. I was just diagnosed at 29 weeks with a rather large diastasis recti gap and had the same questions – how will this affect labor and delivery? Do those muscles come into play to assist the uterine contractions? Is there information about positioning to help my body with this during labor? Also, I didn’t start to “show” until about 4 1/2 to 5 months into the pregnancy, and grew pretty quickly in the past 6 weeks, but i noticed the gap right away but just didn’t know what it was. No one in my family ever had this, and I have always had a strong core and stomach, never had any problems with transverse muscles or weakness there, and exercised lightly throughout my pregnancy with pre-natal yoga and kegel exercises, so confused as to the cause of this condition. It does not seem to mesh with what is described online as causes, so I am also not sure about how to treat it. There seems to be varying info online regarding different exercises vs surgery post birth, but nothing concerning labor time itself.
    thanks in advance for any insight you can offer.

    • http://mutusystem.com Wendy Powell

      Hi Carissa, some of your answers are hopefully answered
      below, but yes, your core will come into play during labour & the more in touch with your transverse & pelvic floor muscles & the more strong & flexible they are the better. Please don’t worry about diastasis during pregnancy… it’s is so often described as some terrible affliction when really it is just your body doing what women’s bodies have been doing since time began – making,
      growing & birthing babies… when our baby needs room, our body adapts. Focus on avoiding what will make it worse (the curling, the coming up from your back etc) & don’t worry. You haven’t done anything to cause it & nor could you have done anything to avoid it. I also have a small frame & my muscles parted during both my pregnancies! Don’t waste precious energy worrying about post birth surgery & such like – concentrate instead on your pregnancy & making that as healthy & strong as you can. You will be guided during labour into the best positions for your individual needs at that moment – my Midwives had me walking up & down stairs, on all fours & on a gym ball amongst others! Take this process one stage at a time – pregnancy, birth & then mothering & recovery. Look after yourself, stay strong & healthy & your body will do what it needs to do. Stay in touch with your body & enjoy the changes, try to embrace your amazing changing body & don’t fight it. This
      post may be of interest too http://mutusystem.com/testing-for-diastasis-recti-during-pregnancy.html I hope you find this information reassuring & of course grab your program once baby comes along so I can guide back to flat tummy gorgeousness when your body is ready. Good luck! :)

  • Kristy Migliaccio

    Hi Wendy a friend and I have been doing your system for about 2 months now.  I’m not really seeing much of a difference.  Am I maybe doing something wrong?  Someone told me I actullay could have an umbibical hernia instead.  But when I read about the differences between diastasis recti and umbibical hernia, I don’t fall into any of the categories of the hernia.  When should I start seeing results?  I’m now 8 months post-partum.  I have about a 1 & 1/2 – 2  finger seperation.  Any suggestions?

    • http://twitter.com/nomorexcuses wendy powell

      Hi Kristy, it’s hard to say where you’re going wrong as such… firstly I can’t diagnose a hernia by email so you need to get that checked out by a doctor to be sure. No exercise can close a hole in your abdominal wall (which is different to a muscle that has moved!) A 1-2 finger gap is actually fine, provided core strength & stability is good & the midline connective tissue is firm & shallow… So, I need to know a bit more to help. Is it a hard protruding belly that is the problem? Or a softer, wobblier one? Is it the diastasis or excess weight that needs to be tackled? And of course, we need to know if you have a hernia. Please email me directly (over there on the right hand column, near the top is an envelope to click!) if you want to give me more detail. I’m here to help & to get you the best result possible!

  • Kristy Migliaccio

    Hey Wendy, just saw my doctor and I don’t have a hernia but he did say that one can form over time if I don’t repair the muscle.  I don’t have any excess weight at all.  I’m actually in better shape now than before I had my baby.  I definetly do have a separation because I do have a large ridge from my belly button up.  Also when I say on my back flat, just about my belly button they is a shallow hole that I can stick my fingers into and I never had that before I was pregnant.  Now you say 1-2 finger gap is fine but my doctor instructed me otherwise.  He says that any gap that is left can produce a hernia in the near future especially if I was to get pregnant again.  It is neither hard nor soft.  I guess you can say it is somehwere in the middle.  Just want to know what you would say my next step is. Thanks =) am posting on here cause when I try to send you an e-mail, it takes me to you-tube. Not sure I am clicking on the right area.  Apologies in advance.

    • http://mutusystem.com Wendy Powell

      Hi Kristy  – if you click the envelope image in the right hand column, it should enable you to send me an email? Obviously I can’t comment on your doctor’s advice as: 1. I’m not a doctor & 2. he’s examined you & I haven’t! I do not advise for or against surgery as that is not my professional area – I simply advise that to improve core & pelvic stability, alignment & strength will only do your midsection & in fact your entire body good & surely it makes sense to exhaust non-invasive options first (just my opinion!). Clearly though if you plan on getting pregnant again hold off surgery for now!

  • Tim12home

    Hi Wendy i feel that what you have on your website is great, and may work for someone.  However it is important to add this is not suitable for everyone and like i some people have to resort to surgery.  Your technique is not a magic wand.

    • http://mutusystem.com Wendy Powell

      Hello, I don’t believe I have claimed to have a magic wand!! I have also never advised anyone they should or shouldn’t have surgery – I am not a doctor & have never claimed to be medically trained – I am an exercise professional who specialises in pregnancy & postpartum fitness, restoration & recovery. Of course everyone’s circumstances are different & you should always seek medical advice where necessary. My boundaries are very clear, & I don’t
      think I have ever implied I possess magical powers 😉 My answer to Kristy below is probably relevant to your comment too. As you state, ‘resorting’ to surgery is usually the *last* resort & restorative exercsie would usually be the preferred option to at least tried first. Others opt for surgery right away. I have no interest in or desire to judge others’ decisions as to what they choose to do, when they decide to do it & who to consult in the process! The more information the better when weighing up your options!

  • Jody

    Hi I have to have a umbilical hernia repaired in two weeks possibly with mesh. If I have the hernia repair with mesh (a new way where they put mesh over the hernia once pushed in and they won’t actually tighten the rectus over the hernia) will this technique still close the muscles where the mesh was placed? Thanks for any help. Jody

  • Gemma0417

    Hi I’m hoping you can help, I have to have a umbilical hernia repaired in two weeks possibly with mesh. If I have the hernia repair with mesh (a new way where they put mesh over the hernia once pushed in and they won’t actually tighten the rectus over the hernia) will this technique still close the muscles where the mesh was placed? Thanks for any help. Jody

    • http://mutusystem.com Wendy Powell

      Hi Jody, the mesh procedure for the hernia & a surgical repair of the diastasis (sewing the 2 halves of the rectus muscle together along the vertical midline) are 2 separate procedures. The 2 are sometimes performed at the same time, but this should be discussed with your surgeon.
      Diastasis & umbilical hernia do exacerbate each other, & so having one condition repaired will certainly help in terms of the look of your tummy, but the hernia repair alone will not strengthen your abdominal muscles, or ‘fix’ them together unless your surgeon does this as well.
      Often the hernia operation is regarded as ‘medical’ whilst the diastasis repair is regarded as ‘cosmetic’ (don’t shoot the messenger 😉 – that’s just how many medical carers / insurance companies see it), so you would need to discuss with your surgeon / insurance.
      Remember that no surgical procedure will STRENGTHEN the muscle – we have to do that! Also, no exercise can repair an actual hole in your abdominal wall (which is what a hernia is).
      I hope that helps.

  • Vicki

    I have a question: After my 2nd baby I noticed my ab muscles separated. I was working out up till the 36th week with both my pregnancies and now I have a cone shaped tummy if I lean backwards even just a bit. I am desperate to get my tummy back in shape, but I am currently expecting the 3rd baby. /I can feel slight lower back pains and “as if” my tummy was portruding much more, i was told this is because of the muscle separation/. Is there anyhting I can do while expecting or I have to wait until I give birth and then start exercising?
    Thanks a lot!

    • http://twitter.com/mutusystem wendy powell

      What you can do now is not encourage the gap wider – always roll to your side when coming up from your back (don’t come straight up) & learn to engage & use your transverse muscle now – so you have ‘muscle memory for afterwards! Don’t panic – your baby needs the room right now, but you’re right – it’s the lack of strength in your core which is causing the lack of stability at the front & hence the back pain & protruding belly. MuTu will put you back together afterwards my Lovely… & meanwhile… good luck :)

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=502451287 Amanda Kevins

    hey there.. for some stupid reason im just NOW realizing i have a diastasis.. the thing is, i gave birth three years ago and hit peak midsection measurements [aside from pregnancy] a year ago.. im determined to help this.. but is it still possible to repair the diastasis, even slightly? thank you so much!!

    • http://twitter.com/mutusystem wendy powell

      Yes it is! The MuTu System programme works for mums however long ago you had your babies! The gap may not close entirely, but it doesn’t need to (see this post http://mutusystem.com/can-the-mutu-system-program-heal-a-diastasis.html ) – you can get a toned, flatter tummy if you follow the online porgramme!

  • karen

    Oh gosh this is the first time I’ve heard that situps are bad! My doctor never mentioned that!  I’ve only got a 1.5 fingerwidth gap… but i’ve been doing situps/crunches/ab isolations for months now. I’m 6 months postpartum and have been working out my abs 3x per week for 30 minutes since my 6 week postpartum checkup. The doc actually said situps would help.  Should I stop now or is whatever damage already done?

    • http://twitter.com/mutusystem wendy powell

      Stop doing sit ups right away! – they will only make your stomach stick out! You need to isolate the transverse abdominis muscle & work it to lie flat & stabalise you, not work the outermost rectus muscle to pooch out…(which is what crunches do). Its never too late to start working your abs the right way :)

  • Melissa Horton

    Hi there!  I stumbled upon your site.  I have a SEVERE diastasis after having three huge babies in 3 years time, all by cesarean.  I still look about 6 months pregnant right now.   I’m desperate to fix my stomach, but some exercises cause me great pain–and I often wonder if I also have some kind of hernia.  I’m experiencing digestive problems too.  I NEED to get this fixed! 

    • http://twitter.com/mutusystem wendy powell

      Hi Melissa, all these factors may be contributing. First step, go see your doctor ASAP & have him/her check for a hernia. If there is a hernia present, MuTu System techniques will improve, but cannot fix a hole in the abdominal wall… digestive issue & diastasis… we can help with! Either  way – you need to start restoring & healing your core – that’s what MuTu does.
      Please do start working towards healing yourself – there shouldn’t be pain :( I can help x

  • Chelsea Browne

    Hello wendy!
    I would really like to advice please, i am almost 18 years old & my son is now 5 months. I had polyhydramnios when i was pregnant, & im only tiny! i have been doing 30 minutes of ab exercises for 4/5 days a week for 10 weeks now! i have been doing planks, reverse crunch scissor kicks, double crunch exercise ,where you raise your knees toward your chin, oblique crunches, hip thrusts, ..& stuff along the lines of that, i dont really have much of a muscle gap, it is like the width of the tip of my finger, so not wide really ..i have only been doing toning exercises for 10 weeks, so not very long, i just have a little doubt that i will get a flat belly again, is this possible within about 9 months of doing toning exercises do you think?

  • Jennifer

    I have a larger abdominal hernia after a vertical c-section in 1997.  Mesh was put in and now it is causing problems and must be removed.   I have a surgery coming up to reconstruct the abdominal wall.  How much can I do on my own without surgery?

    • http://mutusystem.com/ Wendy Powell

      These articles will help Jennifer – so sorry I think this is an old comment which got missed! http://mutusystem.com/tag/hernia

  • Lovelytia2

    hello im 24 years old body fat 25 percent 4 year old daughter no hernia how can i restore my belly and get rid of the fat without saggy skin i have a healthy diet plan already .

    • http://mutusystem.com/ Wendy Powell

      Check out the Mutu System program Lovely Tia! It could be the missing piece of the jigsaw for you :)

  • Millicentmakaya

     Thank you for the hope

  • tellabella

    Hi, I have diastasis recti, my youngest is now 5. My stomach muscles were 5 fingers apart after birth but I luckily had a post-natal physio who helped with transversus and pelvic floor muscle exercises and warned me about stomach crunches etc. I got the gap back to 1and 1/2 to 2 cm in places. However, I have recently developed a hernia (epigastric) and I’m about to have a hernia operation where they’ll do key hole surgery and put a mesh in to strengthen the abdominal wall. My question is, will this improve my stomach aesthetically, will I be able to do more strenuous exercise to improve my stomach muscles? Is there anyway to bring my stomach muscles closer together through key hole surgery? I saw the open surgery consultant but he thought it too risky. Also, I have a lot of problems with lower back pain and jarring my neck which I put down to having weak core strength. Is this true? Will the operation  improve my back problems? Thanks. 

    • http://mutusystem.com/ Wendy Powell

       Hello Tellabella! I’m afraid I can’t answer your questions about surgery as this is not my area of expertise – I’m an exercise specialist, not a medically trained doctor & it would be unprofessional to do so. What i can tell you is that hernia is a result of intra abdominal pressure & a core that isn’t functioning properly,  lower back pain is also very often connected to a weak core & non-optimal pelvic alignment…& so although you reduced the rectus gap before, it sounds like the core (forgive the pun) problem wasn’t effectively addressed.
      Please seek advice from your surgeon, but whether you opt for surgery or not, improving your core strength & alignment with the MuTu System program will certainly benefit you & will cause you no harm (All of MuTu Core & MuTu Breathe are safe & beneficial for you, though take only the no-impact versions in the workouts)

      • guest

        My husbnd also had mesh implanted for his hernia and now suffers crippling permanent nerve damage caused by the mesh, which his Pain Management doctors are unable to cure. Please find out if there is any other method available anywhere before putting mesh in your body!

    • Nick Adams

      Please do alternate research before you have the surgical mesh implanted. My Uncle has had numerous complications since he had his. The last episode was an infection around the mesh that expanded into his intestines resulting in removal. I am not convinced the mesh has been perfected with all the problems that have been reported.

  • Heather

    Please help :) Okay so I ‘only’ have a one finger diastasis, I was still diagnosed by my doctor as having it, and have read contradicting information as to whether or not this constitutes a diastasis in terms of core exercise limitations. I have tried the tupler and it has not helped. The reason I am contacting you is because I really want my tummy to be flat. I am an aspiring fitness competitor, I am almost 7 mos postpartum and down to 16% body fat. My whole body is super toned and then I look 2 mos prego at my belly :( And if I try to do more traditional core exercise (including planks or even just bringing my shoulders slightly off of the ground like a ‘mini crunchie’) I end up with it wider the next time I check so I am really scared to really start working my muscles with traditional exercise, and would love to have someone tell me IT’S OK to do so, and that I wont actually make it worse… I do not have access to see a specialist right now, we are stationed on a remote island in Alaska, so I have turned to finding help online, which so far has not been very beneficial or conclusive as most people seem to give me a cyber eye roll the second I say one finger even tho I really feel that I have a legitimate concern… Any advice you can give me is so appreciated.

    • http://mutusystem.com/ Wendy Powell

      Hi Heather – please take a look at the blog I posted today http://mutusystem.com/you-can-have-a-flat-tummy-and-a-small-diastasis-recti-i-have.html We need to get your entire core & pelvic floor working properly, because if your tummy is bulging, its still not right. The online MuTu System program will definitely help as it is holistic – its will get your whole core working again. Let me know if you need further help.

  • Hawkette03

    I have diastasis recti and now have 2 umbilical cord hernias! Ive tried wraps and splits, and it’s been over a year since my baby, and I look 4 months pregnant, help!!!

    • http://mutusystem.com/ Wendy Powell

      You need to repair & restore your core, not just wrap it up… please consult your doctor regarding the hernias!, but the Core & Breathe sections of the MuTu System will definitely help you re-connect with your abdominal muscles!

  • asdf

    Hi Wendy,
    I am currently 6 months pregnant with my third (second pregnancy, as first was twins). I suffer from a 10 cm separation from my first pregnancy, and my husband and I decided to have the next one close together…twins and #3 will be 18 months apart. I’ve heard that a 10 cm gap is severe and surgery is the way to go. Any thoughts? I continued to look 4-5 months pregnant after the twins.

    • http://mutusystem.com/ Wendy Powell

      There is a great deal you can do to restore & strengthen, whether or not you opt for surgery – following a core restoration program (MuTu Focus – click the coaching program menu at the top of the page) will ensure that your body is tin the best shape to get the most out of whichever option you take. It will also help enormously with repair after surgery… so whilst I can’t comment on whether or not you personally should have surgery – i would highly recommend getting your core back & not to see the choice as an ‘either/or’ – surgery will only sew up the problem, which is fine, but you still need to decrease intra abdominal pressure & build stability & strength in your muscles.

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  • Carole

    Hi Wendy,
    I have a diastasis since the birth of my second child about 15months ago. I’ve never had a flat stomach as I naturally have a quite arched back, but now I really look 4-5 months pregnant if I don’t tuck my tummy in!
    I have been doing gentle exercise in the last 2 months to correct this and managed to go from a 4-5 finger gap to just a little less than 2 finger gap in very little time, but I now feel that I am stuck at that point and don’t manage to make any more improvement…
    Shall I now start to do regular abdominal exercise? IF not, when am I ready for a normal workout? I’d like to go back to my old gym-freak self!!!

    • http://mutusystem.com/ Wendy Powell

      Hi Carole, You need to rebuild your core first – then you can do your workouts! Traditional core workouts with a weak core will mean your tummy will simply push further + further out :( You have to train it, before you can work it. The 12 Week program incorporates intensive workouts from week 3 to add into your core work, or Focus is just the tummy foundations

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  • Lea

    Hi Wendy!

    I have four kids – my oldest is almoast 18 years old and the youngest is just 7 months. so is there any hope for me? my gap is about 2 fingers wide and i’ve been doing crunches after the second and the third child.

    thank you!

    • http://mutusystem.com/ Wendy Powell

      Hi Lea, Its never to late to make improvements! Stop doing crunches + start on one of the MuTu programs + you can start to get strong + stable again :)

  • louise

    I am so glad I found this website I was using a famous ladies post pregnancy exercise dvd that involved all of the moves that should be avoided! now I have the cone stomach or as I lovingly call it my camel hump!

    • http://mutusystem.com/ Wendy Powell

      Glad you found us Louise – can you say which one so other readers will know which DVDs out there are not suitable for DR? Thanks :)

  • Amanda

    Hi Wendy I have a two finger gap after my second which is ten months old and when I lay down after I eat I can feel and see my stomach digesting food. Is that from lack of muscle strength?

    • http://mutusystem.com/ Wendy Powell

      It’s simply that you can see + feel thought to your digestive system working due to lack of stability + support at the front. If you strengthen the midline + restore core strength then you won’t see it all going on!

  • Jmkc

    HI Wendy,

    I have diastasis recti and have been using the Tupler Technique. It has been working great. Since you should avoid certain exercises, what exercises can be done to target your lower stomach? (The “pouch” area..lol)

    • http://mutusystem.com/ Wendy Powell

      Hi there, MuTu System core + intensive workouts use whole body, functional movement to work the core – but not until you have learnt how to engage + use your core effectively safely as you work out. Getting a body that looks + functions how you want it to requires the whole body to work properly – not one isolated muscle – so the workouts are based on teaching you to connect + engage, THEN to strengthen during every move you make – so every exercise becomes a lower stomach exercise! Remember too that the pouch is fat too, not just compromised muscle – that’s why we address all angles with MuTu!

      • Jmkc

        Thanks Wendy! That makes sense.

  • Alara

    Is 15 months post birth with a 3 finger gap something that these exercises could fix? I was told I needed surgery.

    • http://mutusystem.com/ Wendy Powell

      No program should or could guarantee to completely *fix* every situation. But yes, these exercise will help you to connect, engage + restore your muscles. You will be stronger, flatter + more functional if you follow all the guidelines – it’s never to late to start teaching your core to work right!

  • Ceci


    I had twins 4 weeks ago via caesarean and have now
    5cm diastasis recti. I am petite, have no overweight and have always been very
    sportive with a flat and strong belly. I now look 4-5 months pregnant and
    really want my tummy to be flat and to recover a good physical condition. How and when can should I proceed?

    I am quite confused. I have received contradictory messages like not doing any kind of exercise the first 2 months or doing all kind of sports as long as it doesn’t´ hurt. I have also been told by a doctor that the diastais recti will disappear from itself the next months while
    another doctor told me that I will, for sure, need surgery.

    Thank you very much in advance for your recommendations.

    • http://mutusystem.com/ Wendy Powell

      Don’t be overwhelmed Ceci, everything you need right now is in MuTu Focus. Start now :)

  • Miss jungle

    My baby is 16 weeks. I started with a 4 finger gap and have followed exercises which have closed it to about 1 1/2 fingers. I don’t seem to be able to close it further. Whilst I have lost nearly a stone in weight I haven’t lost an inch off my waist size. My tummy is very round still. A fitness instructor told me to do an ecercise on all fours lifting leg and diagonal arm simultaneously whilst engaging pelvic floor and tummy muscles. Is this ok do you think of will it make it worse? What exercises will advance my progress or should I just keep going with the ones I’m doing? I am so worried I will never loose this shape.

    • http://mutusystem.com/ Wendy Powell

      It may not close completely, but if your tummy is still very round then there is still excessive intra abdominal pressure pushing outward which you need to correct. That exercise is only OK if your core is working right when you do it – it sounds like it might not be…. I would suggest the 12 Week Program to get you on track with both a core that works right as well as great intensive workouts designed for your body.

  • Meagan

    Hi Wendy –
    I gave birth to my daughter 4 weeks ago. I have a 2 cm gap at my belly button and above it . I have been focusing on pulling my navel to the spine when I do things around the house like picking up the baby, while nursing ect. I am also a yoga teacher so I am aware of how to properly engage the core. I’ve been doing some yoga poses that I have researched are safe to do for diasitis recti. I know a 2 cm gap is mild ,but I am curious if its ok to do other yoga postures or should I only be doing things like planks and going on all fours. I am a very experienced yoga practicer and am dying to get back to it! I’ve also been practicing laying on my back with my knees bent and slightly lifting my head up while engaging the core as much as I can. I don’t have a hard time holding it in at all. I was also wondering about jogging with a 2 cm gap. Is it safe ? Will it make it worse ? I am not an experienced jogger but I just have this urge to get out there and lose this baby weight. I am normally a very tiny person especially in my stomach and waist. I only I’m only one month post partum but is this left over belly diasitis recti or just baby fat that needs to be burned ? I’m very paranoid about all of this so any guidance would be greatly appreciated !

    • http://mutusystem.com/ Wendy Powell

      Hi Meagan,You are clearly aware of many ‘core engagement’ techniques, but there will be adjustments, including alignment adjustments + specific stretches that will ensure you are targeting the right muscles. the 12 Week program covers every element as well as giving you the intensive workouts you want too. Planks are fine IF your stable is fully stable when you do it. Follow the 12 week program + you can get back to your practice safely + with optimal function + strength!

  • donna

    Hi, ive just started at the gym and part of my workout includes crunches and abdominal exercises. Ive lost most of my prepregancy weight but the area around my belly button and my belly button isn’t pulling back in. Ive just checked for the Diastasis, behind my belly button is a good 4 fingers wide every where else is 1 finger, what would you suggest?

    • http://mutusystem.com/ Wendy Powell

      You ned to stop doing crunches, planks + any variation thereof right away. Explain to your trainer that you have a diastasis recti (if they don’t know what that is – send them to mutusystem.com!) + you need to work on the foundations of getting your core working again. I’d suggest the 12 week program, then confidently take your moves to the gym + if asked, explain your new found knowledge + that you want a core that functions, not that pooches out!

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  • Angharad

    Hi Wendy,

    My youngest is a year old and I have been working out since my baby was five weeks old. I have nearly completed the insanity workout but I still have a two finger split which can be seen plain as day because I have been working so hard. If I do the ‘plank’ position I can see the ‘cone’ (looks like my insides are coming out). I also have a hernia but I can push it back in. My question is, will it ever get better or will I need surgery?

    • http://mutusystem.com/ Wendy Powell

      Your core muscular system is not stable enough to do the plank if it cones when you try to hold the position. Moves that increase intra abdominal pressure are making your diastasis + your hernia worse – please back up + get your core working first! You may or may not need surgery in the future, but if you don’t reverse the pressure inside – you will need that surgery repeated in the future, so get it functioning right so you can heal.

  • Concerned Hubby

    Hi Wendy,

    I read your article and found it very informative. My wife has complained of the same issues/concerns your other readers mention. Our youngest will be 6 soon and I am not sure how many inches the gap in her stomach muscles are. My concern is how do I mention that she maybe having difficulty getting the look she is going for because she is not taking the right steps, the 12 week program to strengthen her core? Also I would assume the 12 week program would benefit both male and females who want to have a stronger core?

    • http://mutusystem.com/ Wendy Powell

      Hi there, Yes it would indeed benefit men too, but it is specifically (+ quite obviously) designed for moms, + so I don’t think you’re going to fool anyone by saying you got it for both of you! If you don’t feel you can point her to this website, maybe recruit a female friend to say it was her idea?!
      PS I’m sorry I just realised how long ago you posted this! :(

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  • gery

    i have a friend that lost her abdominal muscles due to surgery….can this system help her?

    • http://mutusystem.com/ Wendy Powell

      Lost them? Like they’ve gone? Not sure what you mean here (but it doesn’t sound good!) MuTu Focus is entirely restorative + good to aid healing, but I’m afraid I have no idea of the surgery your friend has undertaken + I’m a fitness professional not a medic so she would need to seek medical advice. I would suggest she show this website to her medical caregiver + ask his/her advice on the suitabliity .

  • rokas achramavicius

    Hi Wendy~
    I have what appears to be an epigastric hernia. It is about one inch above my belly button. I am four months post partum with baby number two. I have started mutu system (on week three) and while I’m definitely noticing a deeper awareness with my connection to my core I can’t help but want something a little more engaging. Wondering the best approach so as not to make my hernia worse. I have always been extremely active and my hubby and I have started playing beach volleyball again. I noticed my hernia pushing out quite a bit more this last time we played with a little pain when I pushed it back in. I don’t want to put my “active” lifestyle on hold until I can get surgery but also don’t want to cause strangulation. Wondering your insights on the best way to treat hernia and what moves to absolutely avoid. BTW my DR is only 1 1/2 inches and this hernia falls directly on the midline.

    • http://mutusystem.com/ Wendy Powell

      Hi there, first of all, as a customer did you know you have full access to me + my team in the private facebook group? Go here https://www.facebook.com/groups/MuTu.Mamas/ + ask to join – my team will check you off as a MuTu Mama + let you in!
      If you have a hernia, then right now your abdominal wall is not only under extreme pressure, it has actually completely given out at its weakest point – thats the hernia. Any activity which increases intra abdominal pressure is only going to make that worse… you need to get strong + healed before you challenge your core to withstand more pressure when it is so compromised. Sorry, I know you’d rather I said Go For It! but if your core isn;t ready yet, you need to give it a chance to heal.

  • Emily b 12

    Hi wendy, my son is now 2 and I am pretty sure I have diastasis recti, feels around a 4-5 finger width, I also have a belly button that now sticks out! I never had this before. Will the exercises help this as will as the seperation?
    Really down with looking pregnant all the time :-( hope you can help

    • http://mutusystem.com/ Wendy Powell

      Yes – all these issues as well as the pregnant looking belly are related to the excessive intra abdominal pressure currently going on inside your middle… MuTu Programs are specifically designed to deal with this.

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  • Anna

    Hi, Wendy. I have DR after having my son 14 months ago. It turns out I am expecting again. Are exercises in MuTu safe for doing during pregnancy? Or should I wait until i have my second baby before I sign up.

    • http://mutusystem.com/ Wendy Powell

      Hi Anna, all the alignment + core work (so that’s all of Focus or all the core phases of the 12 Week Program) are really beneficial + safe. The food in 12 Week is perfect for pregnancy… + the intensive workouts are all low impact + adaptable. So… Focus: absolutely safe. 12 Week (which contains Focus) safe + beneficial too for a low risk pregnancy.

  • Dawn

    Wendy, I noticed a doming of my abs along with some bulging to either side of center, some time ago, but no one (including a PT) felt it was concerning. Now the dome is very obvious when I lie and lift head and neck, and there is a significant gap down the center. The “dome” is a large ridge that runs down the center, vertically, of my stomach. My youngest child is 17 YEARS old. Can this still be fixed?

    • http://mutusystem.com/ Wendy Powell

      You can always make improvements to core stability Dawn – no guarantees about ‘total closure’… But ALWAYS significant improvement is possible!

    • Ninu

      Dawn, that sounds like a hernia!

  • Brandi Lee-Johnson

    hello wendy I am into week 2 of my postpartum and I believe I have developed this condition, I had back to back pregnancies within a year of each other and my second child was only 7lb, he really stretched me out fully ( looked like I was preggo with twins). It feels like the upper and lower part of my abdomen have separted because its so hard to walk, lift my leg etc. Is there special abdomen binder to help work through this condition?

    • http://mutusystem.com/ Wendy Powell

      I would recommend in the first instance getting a referral or consulting directly with a private women’s health specialist physiotherapist – more help on that here http://mutusystem.com/referral-to-a-womens-health-physiotherapist.html MuTu Focus will help for sure, but if you have difficulty with these movements you need individual + specialist consultation with a medical professional first.

  • June

    To Whom This Concerns,

    The description of how to get to the Transverse Adominis is correct, and the technique you described came from Joseph Pilates in the 1920’s. Pilates done correctly helps diastasis and does not make it worse. Being a dedicated Pilates instructor I know this. However, it saddens me to see the incorrectly taught “Pilates Teachers Certification” courses out there. They charge a great deal of money and put anyone through their courses so they can make money. Yes, Pilates can harm you when it is being taught by someone who doesn’t understand the method behind it and is not good at teaching it. Yes, Pilates can make you worse if you pick up a DVD and try it without a professional. So frustrating!

    • http://mutusystem.com/ Wendy Powell

      Hi June, I know, it is always frustrating when we see women not getting the real help they need isn’t it? We’ll all just keep doing our thing with integrity + knowledge, + when we don’t know, we refer! Thanks for your input.

  • Claire

    Hi Wendy, I’ve had three big babies, my youngest is now 15 years old and my stomach muscles have separated. I only carry weight around my middle so I look like I am pregnant, I regularly go to the gym but nothing improves my stomach. It is really getting me down as my stomach has never gone back to ‘normal’ after having my kids. Are there any exercises I can do to fix this?

    • http://mutusystem.com/ Wendy Powell

      Hi Claire, yes the MuTu 12 Week Program will help you. You’re working out but just ‘missing out’ the part of the process that gets your core functioning correctly – I know how frustrating if is when you’re trying so hard but not seeing results. Don’t worry though, get started on MuTu System + it all falls into place :)

  • Noshin Paracha

    Hi Wendy

    I have acute problem of Diastasis Recti ever since i have given birth to my child i am facing this problem where my tummy muscles are dislocated causing gap in the central position of my tummy giving it a foul look of being pregnant. Kindly advise me appropriate and most effective method to reduce/overcome this problem completely, enabling me to come back to my pre birth condition.

    • http://mutusystem.com/ Wendy Powell

      Hello Noshin, MuTu System gives you the precise, gently progressed but highly effective exercises you need. Go to ‘Choose Your Program’ on the menu at the top of the page + find the tight one for you!

  • Ninu

    Hi Wendy, I am one year PP with my first, who I had via c section. I lost all the baby weight by 6 months and exercise/eat well. I had repaired my 5cm split to 2.5 cm, but just found out yesterday it’s back to 4cm and now I have a hernia too! :( I’m SO saddened. Please, help me! What should I do? I’m stopping lifting weights and exercising, and wll just eat well. Also – Should I wait to heal the RD before having another baby? Will my belly be funny looking with the hernia and all, once pregnant again? Thanks!

    • http://mutusystem.com/ Wendy Powell

      Hi Ninu, the key is to build the foundations right, so that your chosen activity (weights, etc) or indeed everyday activity (lifting, twisting) doesn’t undo any progress you’ve made. The 12 Week Program is perfect for you – you get to sweat, lift heavy stuff etc… (after week 3!) but you’re taught how to do it in a way that protects your core. This keeps you stable + supported, so that you strengthen your entire body effectively as you exercise. Alignment us vital – the often missed element – correcting the excessive Intra abdominal pressure which is the cause of the split… Join our 12 Week Program + you get the whole solution :)

      • Ninu

        Thanks wendy, I bought the 12 week program and started today with phase 1. I found out my gap is indeed 4cm and I have a hernia aswell. Does that change how I should approach the program, and can I still do light weights at the gym, or should I stick to cardio? Thanks!

        • http://mutusystem.com/ Wendy Powell

          Hi Ninu + welcome! I would stick with just the program certainly for the first 6 weeks – you will learn so much about how to take care of your core, + if you choose to supplement the program with gym (you don’t need to but you can if you want to!) then you’ll know how to do it safely + effectively. Have you joined our closed Facebook group for customers? It’s an amazing support resource – thousands of women dong the program – hopefully see you there soon :)

  • jasmine

    Hi is plank on your elbows Ok to do. My gap is only just over one finger but I want to close itmore

    • http://mutusystem.com/ Wendy Powell

      A plank is not appropriate if you have a diastasis, as you cannot withstand the intra abdominal pressure against gravity in this position. But 1 finger is very small – it depends on the stability of your whole core + the firmness of the midline as to whether your muscles can function optimally in the plank position.

  • Kelli

    What exercises can I do WHILE pregnant to help fix diastasis recti?

    • http://mutusystem.com/ Wendy Powell

      All the reconnection / learning to engage correctly exercises of the first phases of Focus or the 12 Week Program are entirely appropriate + helpful during a healthy pregnancy.

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  • Michelle

    Hi I have this & I’m suffering from bad back ache, pain in my right hip & bowel problems (going to the toilet a lot), are/can these be connected? I used to be a dance teacher & have had to change career path due to the pressure on my back. What’s the best way to help this? I’ve had 4 c sections. Thankyou

    • http://mutusystem.com/ Wendy Powell

      Hi Michelle, yes they may very well be connected, but I can’t diagnose pain for you + so will refer you to this information http://mutusystem.com/referral-to-a-womens-health-physiotherapist.html in the first instance. The MuTu programs are recommended by Women’s Health Physiotherapists + are often complementary to their care – but any pain should be first discussed with medical professional.

      • Michelle

        Thanks for the reply. I had a hernia repair (above the belly button) last year, I’ve had a colonoscopy a few months ago, showing nothing wrong with my bowel. I’m hoping to get referred to physio to try & help, what’s the 12 week programme you do? Thanks

  • Joana M

    Hi Wendy, my name is Joana, i had my first baby a month ago via emergency c section. I had a very strong and taut tummy before but am now experiencing a 3.5 finger gap. I put on 9 kilos during pregnancy and lost most in the first few weeks. I have 2kgs left to go. Mostly though i want to heal my diastasis. I am in london. Is your program available online?
    Many thanks!

  • Marie

    Hi, my name is Marie. I have been struggling with my belly for years now. I like to think of myself as a fit person but I cannot lose that belly. I just recently started reading about diastasis and realized that could be what is wrong. I did the self test and the gap is about a finger wide when I lift my head but the belly rises when I do a crunch or lift my legs (to the point where it looks like I have a loaf of bread under my skin). The same think happens when I am standing up and leaning backwards, the loaf pops out. I have encl. a picture of my belly and my “loaf of bread in the oven”. I only have one child and he is 6 now so it’s a long time ago.
    I recently did the 30-day plank challenge but realize that was not such a good idea. Should I just stop working my abs and focus on pelvic/back strength?
    Thanks for your input.

    • http://mutusystem.com/ Wendy Powell

      Hi Marie, that ‘loaf of bread’ description is a common one – this is a typical diastasis. It’s not that you need to stop looking after your abs, but rather you need to stop doing the exercises that make a diastasis worse – i.e. planks or crunches, or indeed anything that increases intra abdominal pressure (the pressure pushing that part outwards). the muTu system programs will take you back to the foundations, teach you how to align + restore your body so that you can do more intensive exercise again, but with correct core engagement + function rather than with a protruding tummy + unstable core.

  • Ashley

    Hi Wendy,
    I recenlty had my 2nd baby 5 weeks ago and my gap is only 1 finger width apart. i have been doing the recommended exercises to close it which is helping. my gap is only open about 1-2 inches in length along the belly button. the rest of my muscle are completely closed. does that mean i am able to start harder work outs on my abs.?

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  • amanda harrison

    When I do the diastasis check it is a little wider than eight fingers maybe between nine and ten and really deep like from my fingertips to my knuckles. I have had 6 kids including twins and two that were 10 pounds each. My youngest is 3 years old I have noticed this since the birth of my twins which are now 12. Will this program work for me I have a half football shaped dome when I flex my stomach that goes from below ribs to belly button. I really am hoping this will still work as it is becoming uncomfortable and causing other symptoms. I am desperate and dont have much money so I would like to get a program that may actually work. Please let me know any help would be greatly appreciated.

  • gappin

    Hi my baby is nearly 4mths old & the diastasis has now gone from nearly 3fingers when spotted at 9wks to 1 now. My question is does it go to no gap as in no fingers 😀 & how do I avoid this in a subsequent pregnancy. Thank you.

  • mamak

    Hi Wendy,
    I just purchased another DR program and am only on day two but followed it so far. I am frustrated by the recommendation to cease my current workout routine. In your program, can I do my normal HIIT workouts and weight lifting but just focus on engaging my core and avoiding typical abdominal exercises for now?? I have about 3-3.5 finger gap

    • April

      The DVD should be arriving at my house today. I also work out, i do some weight training and i also teach a cycling class. So would love to hear the answer, i would hate to give these up.

      • http://mutusystem.com/ Wendy Powell

        Hope its going well April :-)

    • http://mutusystem.com/ Wendy Powell

      I think I know the one you mean! There are reasons why you should avoid certain types of workout if you want to repair + restore your core – this post explains http://mutusystem.com/how-long-postpartum-till-i-can-crossfit-plank-run.html The MuTu System 12 Week program includes safe intensive workouts as well.

  • Annie

    Hi Wendy!
    I have about a 2 finger width and want to purchase your program but I have very limited funds right now and several other fitness programs out there. Can I do your 8 week program and do my own fitness routines as long as I avoid certain exercises? The one I’m thinking of doing is called Brazilian butt lift which focuses on full body strength and weight loss but concentrates mainly on your butt and legs… Does it’s sound safe enough to do? Anything I should avoid with this program? And how will I know when I am healed completely and can move on to more high impact workouts? Thanks!

    • http://mutusystem.com/ Wendy Powell

      Hi Annie, if you want other workouts as well, you want the full 12 Week Program as this includes 4 intensive workouts as well as the core work! This gives you the most value, plus everything you need to guide you through, understanding exactly how to use your core effectively in more intensive workouts, what to avoid + how to measure success… its all in there. Its all you’ll need :-)

  • Lindsay

    Hi Wendy! After having three children(my youngest is 11 months old now), I knew something didn’t look quite right in my abdominal area. When I start out in the morning, it looks decent, but definitely not normal, but as the day goes on and it gets bigger and bigger. By the time I go to bed, I look 5 months pregnant. I know I have at least a 4 finger width separation, but my question is it possible to tell the problem is caused by diastasis alone, or something else like a hernia? Does your program help with hernias as well?

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  • Michelle M

    will doing squats or lunges affect my DR?

    • http://mutusystem.com/ Wendy Powell

      You need to be aligned right, + using your core + breathing optimally to do these movements safely + effectively. Squats + lunges feature heavily in our programs, as does instruction on how to do them right!

  • Garry

    Hello Wendy, I’m 43 and I think I have this issue, I Am Male, will this work for me? I was always in great shape, I noticed that I hade that lump when I lay on my back and my belly sticks out, I did go to the DR, she said she wasn’t to worried, but this is stopping me from trying to get in better shape, I know that sounds silly, but I think this issue is causing my other issues, and want to fix. Thankyou

    • http://mutusystem.com/ Wendy Powell

      Hi Garry, yes the exercises + alignment shifts will work for you, but please be aware that these programs are developed for postpartum women so you will find a LOT of the instruction + coaching irrelevant to you! If you’re OK with passing over that aspect, then I would suggest Focus for the specific alignment, stretches + core engagement work.

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  • Tatiana Capitan

    Hi Wendy, I had a diastasis (didn’t know it at the time), by the time I knew what it was luckily I was down to a 2 finger gap (so not technically diastasis anymore?) and have done some exercises aimed at closing the gap, strengthening those inner muscles and abdominal floor and the gap is now at a 1 finger width, but I can still get my finger pretty deep into that gap. I was wondering if now that I don’t technically have diastasis if I’m in the clear or do I still need to avoid the back bends and the twists? Will I ever be able to do them and other traditional abs workouts without the risk of widening the split again? Thank you

    • http://mutusystem.com/ Wendy Powell

      Its not so much about getting an ‘all clear’ as having a core that is stable + can withstand the intra abdominal pressure when you exert yourself for any activity. Remember too that the stability / firmness of the mid line connective tissues is actually more important than the width of the gap. This article explains more about the ‘when am I ready?’ question http://mutusystem.com/how-long-postpartum-till-i-can-crossfit-plank-run.html

      • Tatiana Capitan

        Thanks so much for your reply…very helpful article, makes absolute sense :)

  • CB

    Hi Wendy. I’ve found reading your website very interesting & in particular your direction to not tuck the tail bone in & to gently pull the belly button back while exhaling without clenching anything, to locate the trans abs. was particularly useful.

    However I still need help. I have a huge gap – had it checked by my husband & a friend to make sure. We make it 6 to 8 fingers dependent on whose hand is testing. It’s deep & runs from 2″ above the naval to 3″ below. I feel pretty wretched about the whole thing as I’ve been aware of not being able to contact my abs for a good while (my daughter is nearly 3).

    Question 1: How likely am I to be able to really repair this (e.g. get it closed or to 1) obviously assuming hard work & dedication?
    Question 2: Does it make sense to try ‘focus’ to repair as much as possible & then try the ’12 week programme’, or should I just do the 12 week programme from the outset?
    Question 3: I am due to go on a yoga retreat on August 8th, I have only just found out that I have a diastasis recti & now I’m very worried about making it worse – I can’t afford to cancel so how can I protect myself?

    Many thanks

    • http://mutusystem.com/ Wendy Powell

      To what extent you will ‘close’ the gap is impossible to say. But with the correct restorative exercise + alignment adjustments you can certainly improve your core stability + reduce the gap. Don’t buy both programs – the core sections are the same. If you think you will move on, I suggest buying 12 Week + simply omitting the Intensive work first time through. It depends on the type of yoga + if you have any connection right now with your core… you need to be able to engage + relax your core + pelvic floor, coordinated with optimal breathing, to be safe with your yoga. Plus there are some moves you should avoid – such as boat pose. But many of the asanas will be fine – PROVIDED your alignment is good – if you’re not sure + you can’t discuss all this with the instructor (+ they really understand it) then you may not want to do that right now.

      • CB

        Thanks Wendy. I have gone ahead & bought the 12 week programme & will take it one step at a time. I am VERY keen not to drop yoga as I have chronic thoracic spine pain following a nasty car crash 11 years ago, & yoga is a big help for the constant muscle spasm across my back, shoulders & neck.

        I’ve noticed your handy infographics on pelvic floor & diastasis & was wondering if you have anything similar that I can keep close to hand to tell me what to avoid during yoga, or if you know of an online resource that does the same.

        Many thanks

  • menal

    I’m wanting to buy your system as I tried the tupler for 12 wks. It’s very time consuming and the splint was annoying but I continued. I went from 6 fingers to 2-3 but I stopped with the splint then things changed even over a few days .it’s like the connective tissue was getting weaker .I’m getting pretty desperate for help now lol..i put such time and money into the program and my belly lower is still round .I know it can’t possibly be weight issue as I’m only 48 kgz and have great upper abs. Very visible but lower belly , nothing at all but when I hold my ta in a squeeze my pelvic floor everything tightens and looks fabulous ..it looks so toned ..I’m confused why when I hold ta does it look great but relaxed is different , is that from the dr? My lower back pain has gone but now the pain has gone up a bit ..pls Amy help would be appreciated I just want my lower stomach flat again ..I’m very toned every where else ..

    • http://mutusystem.com/ Wendy Powell

      You need to work on your alignment as the ‘missing link’ to get your connective tissue in the right place + doing its job… the focus on alignment to reduce intra abdominal pressure is a defining feature of the MuTu System programs. Good luck + there is a customer support forum where you can keep checking in to make sure you’re getting it right!

  • Jean

    Can I do kettlebell swings and the turkish get up with diastasis recti?

  • Beka

    I had a C-section 9 months ago. I think the physician sutured the lower part of my abdominal muscles together (where the incision is), but I still have a gap in the upper area of my abdomen. Is this common, and is there anything I should know before I purchase the program? Thanks!

    • http://mutusystem.com/ Wendy Powell

      The abdominal surgery will mean there is scar tissue, possibly lack of neurological connection… all this is addressed in the program :-)

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  • Jennifer Buehner

    Wendy, I am very interested in purchasing the program. I wore the Tuppler splint and did the exercises for the past 7 months and I still have a 1 finger gap and look 4 months pregnant at times. I eat a TON of fiber, sometimes for dinner I will have a couple of huge salads. I eat a lot of psyllium husk and oat fiber, could this be causing my stomach to protrude and could this be keeping my diastasis from closing? I have had issues with bulimia in the past which is a reason why I now eat large quantities of salad.

    • http://mutusystem.com/ Wendy Powell

      Bloating + digestive issues may ‘show’ more when you have a diastasis, since your abdominal wall is unsupported. But the digestive issues don’t cause the diastasis – this is about alignment + pressure. This is why a holistic approach is needed, + absolutely not an isolated *fix one muscle* approach. The 12 week program would work really well for you as it covers all these issues

  • Mark

    Hi guys, I have recently came to realise that I am suffering from this disorder, but my issue is what I would see to be slightly rare! I’m not a mom nor have I neglected the body. I am a fitness finatic and personal trainer. Iv recently noticed a ridge about 1 inch in depth and 4 inches in length popping out on strenuos workouts between the vertical walls. I’m pretty worried at this point and really need your help

    Thanks Mark

    • http://mutusystem.com/ Wendy Powell

      It’s not rare Mark, Diastasis is a result of inappropriate loading + alignment, causing increased intra abdominal pressure. It is very common in people who lift a lot or engage in high intensity exercise or activity when the core is not reacting + functioning optimally. This link will help explain. not all the signs will be relevant as a non-Mom, but the principles are exactly the same – if the core strains or bulges outwards when its ‘working’ – its not working right. http://mutusystem.com/how-long-postpartum-till-i-can-crossfit-plank-run.html

    • Mark

      Mark, I think, (since I also have this), that it seems rare for men because the cause is not as obvious as it is for women. In my case, I was a power lifter and not all together confident that I always lifted correctly. Also, I think that the common association with diastasis recti and pregnancy or newborns may cause a stereotype that inhibits a lot of men from admitting they have it or seeking help with it.

  • Kari

    So happy to find your info! I’ve gone twice to a PT for my DR issue – I have had two babies but my oldest is 11. I have a sway back and had umbilical hernia surgery 8 months ago. My DR is 2.5 inches all the way down. I just found out that I’ve been doing all the wrong exercises. What I love to do is rowing – and want to strengthen my core to get back out on the water. I tried the erg today at the gym and am wondering if that too is a bad excersise right now?? It doesn’t twist but my lower back is so weak I usually feel pain – today I didn’t. Any suggestions?

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  • Momof3

    Hi Wendy,
    I recently purchased your focus program and can already tell a slight difference being in day 2 of phase 1. My question is, is it alright for me to do tricep dips (one foot on top of opposite knee), wall push-ups, and dumbbell curls & skull crushers if sitting on a stability ball? If not, what arm exercises are safe?
    I don’t want to ignore my upper body while my core is healing.
    Thank you so much for your time. I really appreciate it.
    Raina K.

    • http://mutusystem.com/ Wendy Powell

      Hi, sorry we missed this – please use the closed member group on Facebook for quicker customer answers next time! Watch your alignment with these exercise, as sitting to do upper body work often results in rib thrusting which is detrimental to your core. Be mindful of all issues discussed above, plus, most importantly, follow the alignment protocols + stretches in your program.

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  • Katelynn

    I have about 20lbs to lose, but look about 5-6 months pregnant. I am pretty sure my DR is about a 2-3. How can I tell what is causing me to look so pregnant, the extra weight or the DR? Thank you so much!

    • http://mutusystem.com/ Wendy Powell

      Extra fat is sitting on top of your core, so any protrusion underneath will simply push this out giving a larger appearance. If there’s pressure inside pushing out, you need to address that to heal + restore, plus if you want to see your new core you need to lose the fat covering it up… So it’s a bit of both!

  • suzan perez

    hello everyone, i am here to share my testimony on how i conceived my baby. i have been married to my husband for 18years without no issue. my husband has been tested OK, i too have been tested. but no issue. i had problems with my in-laws even my husband started to have new affairs aside your marriage. it was a very terrible thing to bear. i became a laughing stock among my pear, i prayed and fasted and nothing happened. i was now seen as always unhappy. after many medical treatment and there is no way. i took it as i was born barren and i accepted every challenge that comes my way. i was even ready to pack out of my marital home and stay on my own because my husband was not given me any attention that i needed from him. i decided to focus on my job and try to live happy on my own.
    on this faithful day, i decided to check the net for updates on healthy living and i came across a story of a man who Dr EDIONWE helped his wife to conceive a baby. i decided to put a try because this has been my greatest problem in life. today i am a proud mom. words will not be enough to explained what this man did for me. he casted a pregnancy spell on me and i noticed i was pregnant on the 7th day after the spell. i am a happy mother, the pride of my family, a miracle in my town. i know there is someone in same condition and you feel there is no way. i urge you to contact him via email edionwesolutiontemple@gmail.com. This is the solution to every single mother around the globe. distance is not a barrier, he will surely make your dreams come trough. contact him today via email: edionwesolutiontemple@gmail.com. you want your lover back or any other miracle in your life, contact him today so the world can be a better place to live. bye!!!

  • Kerrie Stanford

    my youngest is now two, and i have a 6 and a half to 7 finger gap, will i still be able to bring this back together? should i see my doctor?
    As it turns out, the Pilates i was recommended is totally the wrong thing to do (luckily i din’t really enjoy it, so didn’t do it as much as i ‘should have’)

    • http://mutusystem.com/ Wendy Powell

      There is never a guarantee of complete closure – + importantly, there may not need to be. You can always make a difference Kerrie!

  • Denise1209

    So frustrated after reading this as I beleieve everything I have been doing to help my back issues….planks…trx training..crunches…have all been bad for the diastTis…which I was dx with it years ago but of course was not told what to do or not to do…they acted that it was common…My back issues have severely gotten worse and now I am wondering if it’s more because of this…which my chiro has been saying I just need to get my core strong not knowing the exercise were bad….now what doi do..my youngest child is 16 so this has been an issue for a long time as after my 2nd child who is 19 is when the back issues started…would I be a candidate for surgery? What type of dr do you go to that will take you serious about this?

    • http://mutusystem.com/ Wendy Powell

      Surgery may or may not be necessary Denise, but you can always make improvements + you can always make a difference (however long ago you had your baby) with the right program. AND even if you do opt for surgery, you will still need to attain function + strength in your core – so either way – heal yourself first!

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  • Laura Sánchez

    Hi Wendy,
    I had the weirdest craziest aha moment 5 days ago. I have a 2-finger diastasis + smaill umbilical hernia + terrible back. I am on phase 2 of your program and all of the sudden I started feeling a muscle from inside pulling upwards while I was bringing belly button to spine. It pretty much fit your description of what should be happening inside, so I kept doing it… The funny thing is that 2 days later, the hernia stopped bothering me… Of course, I don’t want people to misunderstand… The hernia is not “cured”, but I feel no pressure on it… It’s hard to explain… it feels… deflated? Anyway, thank you, THANK YOU for this.

    • http://mutusystem.com/ Wendy Powell

      Fabulous :-) Great results!

  • Jennifer

    Wendy, i’m so happy I came across this website I had no idea what was wrong with me I just realized maybe a month ago that I had abdominal umbilical hernia where there is like a space around my belly button that looks like flat now I come across your website in it and I definitely think I have the diastasis as well i’m going to try to start the system and see if you can help me, again thanks so much!

    • http://mutusystem.com/ Wendy Powell

      Welcome Jennifer!

  • Lindsay

    I’m excited about the possibility of your system! However, I have a question before I commit to a purchase. My second child is 7 months old. I am extremely thin, due to breastfeeding, and actually look forward to gaining weight. I have checked for DR, and my belief is that if I have it, it is minimal: 2 fingers or less. But I still look around 4 months pregnant. Would your program help in my situation?

    • http://mutusystem.com/ Wendy Powell

      The pregnant looking tummy is very likely due to uncontained pressure – a compromised core, + diastasis recti. If you’re concerned that you may have any medical condition causing the problem, or a hernia, please check with your doctor first. But yes I’m sure you will benefit if this is not the case!

  • Teresa

    Hi, I have a bladder prolapse and my doctor says that exercises don’t work. Your program says to ask your doctor before starting these exercises. Can your program help with my bladder prolapse? I had a huge hernia repaired in July as well.

  • Eg

    Are back bends in yoga safe? Are there other yoga moves that should be avoided or modified? I have just 1finger gap. Thanks

  • DB

    I’ve had 2 c sections, last one 11 years ago. Im in good shape, I admit, i don’t work out my abs anymore after I did fully after each C section. My question is- i took a Barre class and we did several isometric sit ups. after 25 of them I couldn’t recline. After I got home my stomach seemed bulgy ( I wasn’t bloated) my stomach had to heal, felt like I had no strength in the lower abs. I am searching for corrective ab work now as I feel that my stomach muscles aren’t the same after a week from the class and they don’t look normal.

  • RM

    If i get the 12 week program is it easy to pick out the Focus part of it? which is what I would like to do now while pregnant and I thought maybe after pregnancy I may want to do the whole program rather than getting both??

  • Julie

    Is it safe to continue to do other exercise programs in addition to MuTu, as long as I avoid traditional ab crunches, planks, etc. I’ve been exercising consistently (cardio, upper and lower focus, etc), have lost about 15 lbs, and love the way I look except for my Mummy Tummy, which I have finally realized is DR, measuring about 3 fingers. I am afraid to give up the exercise i have been doing but I don’t want to worsen my DR.

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  • Jeremy

    Since recently being diagnosed with a DR I have been researching online for about 12 hours now. Watching video’s, reading articles, reviewing programs, consulting my BeachBody coach, and questioning my Dr. (specialist) who diagnosed me. After digesting all of this information I feel pretty confident about the Mutu system, but the one problem I have is how the focus seems to be strictly geared and marketed towards women. I am a male with a 4-5 finger width DR and would like to know how you feel I would do on this program. For me, the most embarrassing part of my DR is when being intimate with my girlfriend. When I try to sit upright it looks like a miniature sized football is popping out of my stomach and it bothers both of us. I have had this condition for 2 years now and would love to work towards brining the recti muscles back together. I understand all of the variables involved and that your program does not guarantee that the gap will completely close, but with a 4-5 finger width gap I would hope that I would at least be able to go from a small football sized bulge to at least a tennis ball, but with a goal to have no or little bulge. I don’t want to set my expectations too high either, but I have to wonder if I should have some additional reservations with Mutu because I am a male.
    Lastly, I get a kick out of all these videos and system that say to consult your Dr. because I saw a very highly recommended Dr. here in town who does many DR surgeries and Hernia repair, and I was told by her when questioned about working out that I was fine to do anything that I would normally do – sit-ups, crunches, planks, etc…. and that I should not hold back in any fashion due to my DR. For someone with a 4-5 finger width split, all that I have read online has said the exact opposite of that and the physics and critical thinking behind staying away from those exercises only makes sense! Sometimes the doctors do not have all of the right answers or are not educated enough to provide good advice, but due to Liabilities and their Title, we tend to take what they say for gospel. I guess where I am getting at with this last paragraph is that for me consulting with the Dr. was somewhat of a joke, so it looks like I am on my own in figuring this out. :(

  • scott roberts

    Like the previous member, I am male and my “bump” (unlike his) is not down the middle of my stomach but on my left side below my belly button. It just appeared one Saturday morning when I arose. Bam, like that. It looks like I have a “spare tire” for 7-9 inches and it is disfiguring. It sticks out 2 inches or so. I am following the exercises in this program and this happened to me 4 years ago . At that time my regular doctors had no idea what it was, tested for a spigenlia hernia (negative) and then the bump (?) went away while I was undergoing acupuncture after 6 weeks. No one knew why it went away. Am I wasting my time with this program or has anyone else experienced this “bump on my hip” diastasis? Has anyone been successful defeating it? Please advise. srob102@aol.com. scott roberts