Diastasis Recti in Men

diastasis recti in men

Move over ladies! The Tummy Team is for men too! 

Diastasis recti in men is more common than we think. Read the testimony of a 71-year-old man who healed his diastasis and relieved his pain through our program. David started with a 6 finger wide diastasis and a 38″ belly when we started with him. During the course of only 4 sessions, he completely closed his diastasis, relieved his back pain, and measured only 34″ at on his final appointment.  He had been dealing with this for over 8 years!

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“This is to thank you [Kelly], Gillian, and the entire Tummy Team for the fantastic result I obtained using your program. I hope my results might inspire some others since diastasis recti in men is apparently pretty common.  If a 71-year-old male with a fairly severe diastasis that had persisted for several years can make a full recovery then I would think just about anyone could.

My problem began at least eight years ago and kept getting worse.  My stomach protruded so badly I looked pregnant, not an attractive “look” on a man.  I consulted two board-certified plastic surgeons who told me diastasis recti in men could not be helped with exercise and that the only “cure” was surgery. I tended to believe them because the many abdominal exercises I had tried did nothing.  It turned out, as I learned from Gillian, that these exercises were exactly the wrong kind to do.

The surgery, however, leaves a large scar, takes months for full recovery, is quite expensive, has an uncertain outcome and also carries with it the risk of serious infection, among other things.  I did some research for diastasis recti in men online and found The Tummy Team.  I was skeptical this would work in my case.  It appeared to be effective in younger people, especially postpartum women,  but I had doubts it would work in an “antique” like me.  Nonetheless, it seemed worth a try, given that the only alternative was major surgery.

Not too long after starting the program with Gillian, I departed on a long world trip that made it more difficult to do the exercises and wear the splint, but thanks to the expert advice Gillian gave me, I was still able to make good progress while traveling. I continued after returning and in less than four months from that point, I first started the program I had complete closure of my diastasis. Now, I can look at myself in the mirror without wincing. I lost four inches around the middle without any loss in weight and have a flat belly again.

It’s amazing and highly gratifying that something I had suffered from for years could be cleared up in just a matter of a few months.  The exercises were easy to learn and follow, and the splinting, which I had feared would aggravate my chronic acid reflux,  actually seemed to make it better.  My chronic back pain has also significantly improved.  I still wear the splint at night simply because it makes me feel more secure and continues to help with the nocturnal reflux.

I can’t thank you enough Gillian. Healing diastasis in men is possible without surgery! To all at the Tummy Team: Keep doing this great and much needed work.”

– David, Vancouver, WA

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It is never too late.  Let us help you!

Do a preliminary self-check for diastasis by watching this video: How To Check for Diastasis  

If you cannot meet with us in person, we offer a very effective and comprehensive Core Foundations Online Program.  You can do this, we can help you.

16 responses to “Diastasis Recti in Men”

  1. Tom Tillman says:

    I have had 14 hernia surgeries, some in abdomen and some ingroinal, 3 of these involved infection, the last hernia surgery I had was in 2007. I have also had 3 back surgeries in lumbar region, developing into Chronic Pain ( mainly in left side of back and running down left leg ) these surgeries were between 1999 and 2003. In 2013 I had to have Gallbladder removed ( Gallstones ). I also have lesions in cervical spine, that are benign. I have multiple issues with spine. When I had Gallbladder removed, it could not be done laproscopticly, surgeon had to removed through incision on the right side just below rib cage. After Gallbladder was removed my abdomen starting separating ( Diastasis ), pain is Chronic. I have been to Mayo Clinic and they suggested Upper Right Quadrant Injection. Mayo Clinic did colonoscopy and endoscopy, a few polyps were removed and were benign. Please excuse my spelling on some of these words. I was wondering your thoughts and if there might be a permanent solution to the problem? Any suggestions would be very much appreciated. One thing I left out is my age, I am a 54 years old.
    Thank you,
    Tom

    • TheTummyTeam says:

      Hi Tom,
      I am so sorry to hear about all that you have been through. I think our program will be very effective at treating a lot of your chronic pain, but perhaps not all of it since it could stem from multiple issues. Our program targets core weakness and all that stems from that – including diastasis recti. It sounds like so many surgeries have lead to a functionally weak core that is compounding the issue. Our program will address and reverse your diastasis, strengthen your core, balance out muscle imbalances, fix your posture and alignment, reduce the chance for more hernias, and in doing all of that, minimize most of your chronic pain.

      Because you’ve had so many surgeries that could be complicating the issue, I would recommend doing a Skype Session (or 2) along with our 8 week program to personally tailor it to your needs. These are one hour sessions with one of our Core Rehab Specialists who can talk with you about your needs and give you more personalized instruction based on your health situation. I would recommend scheduling a session at about 2 weeks into the program, and again around 4 or 5 weeks into the program.

      Along with our Core Foundations Online Program ($199) and 1-2 Skype Sessions ($100 each), you would also benefit from an abdominal rehab splint to speed up the healing of your diastasis. If you want to continue talking about your options with us and ask further questions, feel free to email me at grace@thetummyteam.com

  2. Matthew Chapman says:

    I have crohns disease and diastasis Recti. I am a 36 year old male and would like more information on certain exercises I can do without getting surgery. My crohns is basically treated with a lot of immune therapy. I was concerned about how I now look like I’m going to have twins and how to fix it without surgery. Thank you ahead of time. Sincerely, Matthew Chapman.

    • TheTummyTeam says:

      Hi Matthew,

      I am friends with someone who lives with Crohn’s and also treats it with immuno injections. I am sorry you have to bear that burden. As far as treating your diastasis recti, we can absolutely help with that. We have a comprehensive program called Core Foundations that teaches you all about what to do and what not to do to close the gap, heal the tissue and keep it from reopening. We address posture and alignment, muscle compensations, and strengthening the transverse muscle. It’s an 8 week online course that takes you through the step-by-step process. That would be my recommendation. If you are interested, I could offer you 15% OFF the course (regularly $199).

  3. Lynne says:

    I think my husband has diastasis recti. He complains about his “belly” and also has back pain and digestion problems. How can he know if he has diastases? Does he need to get a diagnosis?

    • TheTummyTeam says:

      Hi Lynne,
      We have more information on Diastasis Recti – including a video on how to check yourself – here: https://thetummyteam.com/core-rehab/symptoms/diastasis-recti/
      He does not need a doctor to diagnose him. If he is complaining of digestion issues and back pain, core rehab would help even if he didn’t have a diastasis. The treatment for Functional Core Weakness and Diastasis Recti is the same. We’d love to help him feel better. We have online programs, or if you’re local, come visit the clinic.

  4. Luke says:

    So I am a younger guy – 36. But I still think I might have it. Is it normal for someone younger to have diastasis? I am a weight lifter and play in city sports leagues. Is it possible I injured myself? How do men even get DR?

  5. TheTummyTeam says:

    Hi Luke,
    Anyone can develop DR, regardless of age or gender, because it is the result of consistent forward forceful pressure against the linea alba. Most of the men we treat have this condition because of a combination of poor postures/movement strategies, excess amounts of crunches or situps, and bracing their abdominals when they workout. I would recommend checking out our Tummy Safe Fitness page to learn more about how those movements likely weakened your tissue over time: https://thetummyteam.com/core-rehab/tummy-safe-fitness/
    And if you want to learn more about DR, and how to check yourself, you can look here: https://thetummyteam.com/core-rehab/symptoms/diastasis-recti/

    We’d love to work with you to heal your diastasis and get you back to lifting weights in no time. Check out our online programs while you’re perusing our site.

  6. Chris says:

    Thank you for this post! It’s actually hard to find information about diastasis when it comes to men. I am glad to know I am not the only one out there with it and that there’s help!

  7. Lynn coomber says:

    My son is 40 and his diastasis has developed over 3 years more than 3 fingers width all the way down his abdomen. He is very low and has been told surgery not an option what can he do, any advice would be helpful . Thank you

    • TheTummyTeam says:

      Hi Lynn,

      I would recommend our Core Foundations online course for your son. It is designed for men and women alike. I think he would greatly benefit. We generally recommend abdominal splinting as well, so I would recommend he purchase one from us along with the program.

  8. Bobby says:

    Hello, I was just seen by a surgeon for what was believed to be a hernia to find out it is actually diastasis recti. I am a 44 yr old male who recently had 2 herniated disks in my lower back fixed. Also have degenerative disk disease and my spinal column is narrowing. My pain specialist is also recommending a Gastric Bypass to get some of my excess weight off my back. Was wanting more info on this program and was wondering if it might be something, I should look into.

  9. TheTummyTeam says:

    Hi Bobby,
    Given the back pain you are complaining about, and of course the diastasis, this program would be very beneficial for you. Although we do focus on strengthening the core, this is not an exercise program. We are physical therapy and so our “exercises” are more functional. So we won’t ask you to go to a gym or do crazy things. In fact, our approach is to educate you on how the body was designed to function, and slowly strengthen your postural muscles through simple everyday things to eliminate pain and dysfunction.
    When you learn how to properly use the right muscles for posture (sitting, standing, bending, reaching, etc), there will be less pressure on your spine and it will be better supported by stronger muscles. There will also be less pressure against your abdominal wall which is what caused the diastasis.
    As we strengthen your internal core muscles and teach you proper alignment and activation of those muscles, the diastasis will close and the pain will dissipate.
    If you’re local to our Camas, WA clinic, we’d love to see you. Otherwise I’d recommend our Core Foundations Online Program. An abdominal rehab splint would also help speed up healing time.
    Here is a link to our course: https://thetummyteam.com/splinting/why-splint/
    And here is a link to more info on splinting: https://thetummyteam.com/programs/online-core-training/

  10. RJ Quick says:

    I am 68 years old and an Elvis tribute artist I have to keep myself in shape so I exercise daily my waist is very important in order to get into my suits. I have read on diastasis recti and all the exercises I’ve been doing appear to be the wrong ones to fix the condition. I realized I had this after my waist all of a sudden went from 33 to 41. I didn’t know what had happened. I saw a weird bulge when I was doing sit ups and Google it and did the self test and found that I had diastasis recti. It’s a big problem since I can’t get into my suits now without the look of an inner tube around my waist. Also when I lay down and push on my stomach it has usually been hard but now it looks like I’m pushing on a waterbed and it jiggles kind of like jelly. I have made an appointment with a doctor but I read your articles online I live in Jacksboro, Texas which is just North of Fort Worth. Do you think my diagnosis is correct about the diastasis recti and do you think you can help fix it and how long will it take.

    RJ Quick,

    940 567 2737
    rqeta@yahoo.com

    • TheTummyTeam says:

      Hi there,
      Yes, I think your self diagnosis is correct. It sounds like you also have what we call “Functional Core Weakness” (FCW). Your postural muscles are just not strong enough to support you in daily movements and postures. Luckily the treatment to both diastasis and FCW is the same. I believe we can heal your diastasis and improve your strength. The timeline is variable based on many factors, but men tend to do well with treatment – especially when it is related to poor exercise choices and correcting that. I am not sure what your doctor will say but I want to put it out there that surgery will not be an effective treatment plan. In our experience, these are only temporary fixes, and can even make the problem worse over time because of the trauma to the area and because the postural patterns that lead to it in the first place aren’t addressed.
      I would recommend an Abdominal Rehab Splint along with our Core Foundations Online Program – both are on sale until May 18th.

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