Is it Safe to Do Sit Ups, Crunches and Planks with a Diastasis Recti Abdominus (DRA)

How to Avoid Making Your Tummy Gap Worse

Is it Safe to Do Sit Ups, Crunches and Planks with a Diastasis Recti Abdominus (DRA)

If we had a nickel for every postpartum woman who asked us if it is safe to do high intensity core exercises like sit ups, crunches and planks with a DRA or diastasis recti abdominis, we’d have a lot of nickels.  The short answer is, of course it is safe. Doing these exercises is never dangerous.  Doing these exercises before your body is ready, however, might not get you the results you’re after. 

Here’s a secret.  People do crunches all the time, getting out of deep chairs, getting out of a chair holding a sleeping infant, or just getting out of bed.  You have to learn how to crunch to do these normal daily movements!  People do plank- like movements frequently also.  Getting up from the floor, doing yard work and all sorts of other normal daily things involve these kinds of movements.  

So.  Now what?  It’s safe and you’re doing these movements anyway, so is there a “right way” to do crunches, planks or sit ups?  Maybe, maybe not.  At pelvic physical therapy, we definitely teach you what we think is an optimal way to engage your core.  Women who have learned how to do this the Breathe. Way, again and again report feeling stronger than they’ve ever felt, and that they finally understand why they never “got” core exercise classes or Pilates classes.  

Have a question about what we recommend to do before you start getting into crunches, planks and sit ups?  Check out the video below where we show you the beginning exercises we do.  And then, when you feel about these, gradually move into the harder exercises!  Piece of cake! 

If you watch the video and still feel unsure, you’ll definitely want to seek a women’s health physical therapist.  If you’re in Iowa- you’re in luck and can get to one of our specialized PT’s in the Cedar Rapids, Iowa City or North Liberty area as well as the Des Moines metro.  If that’s too far to drive – telehealth is available!

Breathe. is unique! Private, personalized care that celebrates client victories, big and small. We believe all women deserve to live energetic, vibrant and active lives and it’s our mission to be a partner in achieving that, by specializing in dry needling, DRA, pants peeing, pregnancy/postpartum pain and recovery, pelvic floor dysfunction, headaches, back pain and other orthopedic concerns. 

Appointments available in Des Moines, West Des Moines and Iowa City / Cedar Rapids area.

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