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Splint FAQs

If you have questions about using an abdominal rehab splint, please search this page first. If you cannot find what you are looking for, feel free to contact us.


Click on a category below to view FAQs. Or put keywords in the search box to search all FAQs.


Splinting will bring two sides of the separated abdominal wall together, placing the connective tissue in a lax position to speed up healing. The Tummy Team has been reversing diastasis recti for years and believes the comprehensive approach of splinting alongside a rehab program will bring the best results. Our programs include postural retraining, strengthening, and alignment to help heal diastasis recti. While splinting alone will not heal a diastasis or rebuild your core, splinting plays an essential role in the process and can make a big difference in your recovery.

Category: General

You do not need to have diastasis recti to benefit from abdominal rehab splinting. The abdominal splint acts as a pair of training wheels for a weak and disconnected core, offering assistance until your postural muscles are strong enough to hold you up effectively throughout the day. The splint provides the sensory feedback to help you understand how your core should function. Splinting without rehab, or splinting for months at a time, is not recommended for optimal healing.

Category: General

Splinting is a valuable part of the rehab process, but it is not the whole program. It is possible to rehabilitate your core without a splint, however, we have seen many benefits of splinting alongside our rehab program. It can speed up the healing of diastasis recti, it provides sensory feedback to help you understand what your core muscles should feel like, it increases blood flow to the damaged tissue, and ultimately reinforces what we teach in our core rehabilitation program.

Category: General

Splinting can be an essential part of healing and restoring your core muscles. However, most people don’t realize that abdominal splinting alone will not rehabilitate your core. In some cases, the incorrect and/or long-term use of a splint can make matters worse. The splint is designed to be a temporary transverse muscle during the process of rehabilitation so that you can wean from the splint and ultimately have a strong, rehabilitated core. The Tummy Team offers several online programs that take you through a step-by-step process of restoring your core so you can live a core-strong lifestyle. This is always the ultimate goal of splinting.

Categories: General, How To Use

Many professionals think splinting too tight, for too long and without rehab can lead to muscle atrophy, disconnect, and dependence on the splint.

Consider abdominal splinting as you would consider using a wrap on a sprained ankle. If wrapped too tight, left on for too long, and if the muscles were never trained for walking, then it would be ineffective. But when used properly – with the right amount of support for an intentional amount of time and while encouraging the client to safely use the ankle – it can be a very effective way to assist the rehab process.

The Tummy Team uses Abdominal Rehab Splints with 90% of our functional core rehab clients as a portion of the rehab process. If your care provider has concerns, please encourage them to look at the information provided on our website for professionals.

Category: General

How To Use

Splinting can be an essential part of healing and restoring your core muscles. However, most people don’t realize that abdominal splinting alone will not rehabilitate your core. In some cases, the incorrect and/or long-term use of a splint can make matters worse. The splint is designed to be a temporary transverse muscle during the process of rehabilitation so that you can wean from the splint and ultimately have a strong, rehabilitated core. The Tummy Team offers several online programs that take you through a step-by-step process of restoring your core so you can live a core-strong lifestyle. This is always the ultimate goal of splinting.

Categories: General, How To Use

Always consult with your surgeon regarding their timing for splinting. Generally, as long as there is no drain or infection, clients are safe to splint immediately after the procedure. We recommend always wearing a layer under the splint against the skin. While fastening the splint, be sure to exhale and engage to be sure the splint is snug like a hug around your tummy. Gentle steady pressure often feels supportive. If you have any hypersensitivity to the area, start to address that by placing gentle counter pressure along the incision for a few minutes several times a day to help the nerves calm down. Always listen to your body. If splinting ever makes you feel worse, take a break.

Category: How To Use
  • Wear the splint all day during the initial weeks of core rehab training.
  • Wear the splint over a camisole, undershirt, or bellyband to limit skin irritation and decrease the need for laundering.
  • Splinting is only a portion of core rehabilitation. How you wear your splint and hold yourself while splinting is key to extending the life of your splint, and, ultimately, your recovery. Focus consistently on slightly drawing your navel in away from the splint, NOT on resting into the splint.
  • Remember that the splint is meant to be temporary and helps place the muscles in proper alignment for rehabilitation. The transverse work you perform through exercise, posture and alignment, and functional activities is truly how the muscles heal and rebuild.

Splinting without the guidance of a Core Rehabilitation Specialist (or one of our online programs) is not recommended.

Category: How To Use

In most clients, we recommend abdominal splinting for most of your waking hours, every day for at least the first few weeks. It takes time to build up the tolerance for a splint while learning to engage and elongate your core, so give yourself time to get used to the splint during the first week. Remember that splinting is only a portion of core rehabilitation. How you hold yourself while splinting is key to your recovery. Focus consistently on slightly drawing your navel in away from the splint; don’t rest into the splint.

Category: How To Use

The Tummy Team recommends clients splint consistently during their waking hours for the first 2-4 weeks of your rehab program, depending on the severity of your weakness. During our program, we will guide you in the process of weaning from your splint while encouraging you to use your transverse muscle more and more. Remember that the splint is meant to be temporary and helps place the muscles in proper alignment for rehabilitation. The transverse work you perform through exercise, posture and alignment, and functional activities is truly how the muscles heal and rebuild.

Category: How To Use

Some clients who have a very severe diastasis may want to continue wearing it at night during their rehab process. If you have any kind of pain at night that is keeping you awake or pain first thing in the morning, then splinting at night can be very beneficial. However, sleep is a very important part of healing so if the splint doesn’t help you sleep, then don’t wear it. Remember, splinting is only part of the rehab process.

Category: How To Use

If you are enrolled in an online rehab program, we will demonstrate this to you in the first set of videos. Otherwise, here are some instructions.

  1. Place the splint between your ribs and pelvis. (Overlap onto the ribs or pelvis is okay; just make sure the splint covers the main part of your abdomen).
  2. Stand with your feet hips’-width apart.
  3. Untuck your pelvis and keep your ribs aligned over the pelvis.
  4. Exhale and draw your navel to your spine.
  5. Pull the two sides of the splint across your middle and fasten the closure. It should be snug like a hug, but NOT tight like a tourniquet. You want supportive, but not restrictive.

the tummy team, copyright, abdominal splint how to

Category: How To Use

Yes. However, over-washing will compromise the velcro and lead to the splint being ineffective. Keep laundering to a minimum by wearing the splint over a camisole, undershirt, or bellyband.

To launder, connect the splint by its velcro closure, hand wash, and then machine dry on low.

Category: How To Use

Our splints should last about 12-16 weeks and are not intended for long-term use. We recommend wearing it over a camisole or undershirt to decrease the need for laundering which compromises the velcro.

Category: How To Use

Yes. However, it is important to wear the splint exactly as directed: wear it a bit lower, and scoop up and under the lower belly when applying the splint. (This is demonstrated in the “Fitting Yourself for an Abdominal Splint” video here). Splinting should always make your symptoms better not worse. If you are feeling increased pelvic pressure when splinting, stop and review the instructions, or contact us for an eSession. Splinting is always recommended in coordination with one of our rehab programs.

Category: How To Use

Splinting in Pregnancy

Splinting during pregnancy can be very beneficial. We have much more information on splinting during pregnancy here.

Outside of the United States, most cultures choose to splint, or “bind,” the belly after delivery. We believe it helps to reconnect and protect the stretched-out abdominal muscles. And because new mothers are generally more focused on caring for their newborns than tending to their tummies, a splint works wonders without much extra effort.

Splinting immediately after delivery as well as the first few weeks postpartum can help with healing, reconnecting to your core, back pain, and even postpartum depression. For best results, we recommend using a splint in conjunction with our Core Foundations Rehab Program.

We don’t usually splint during the first trimester. It is the most beneficial during the second or third trimester when there are more demands on your body. Here are our general guidelines:

  • We do recommend splinting when clients are suffering from pregnancy-related pain, such as abdominal pain, lower back pain, pubic bone pain, hip pain, SI joint instability, sciatica and more. The splint will provide the necessary support that your core craves to eliminate that pain.
  • We recommend intermittent abdominal splinting late in the pregnancy as the baby gets heavy and your muscles need a break. The splint will provide the support you need to give you much-needed relief.

Keep in mind that splinting should always make you feel better, not worse. Never power through pain or ignore what your body is telling you. If you are ever feeling overheated, crampy, nauseous, or anything else, then take a break from the splint.

An abdominal rehab splint wraps around to support your corset and your transverse abdominis. It can help reverse your diastasis recti during pregnancy by bringing the two sides of the separated abdominal wall together, placing the connective tissue in a lax position to speed up healing.

We recommend splinting if you have significant diastasis recti (3 fingers and deep, or more). If you have a severe diastasis, your abdominal wall is not strong enough to support your growing uterus without complications like a hernia. The splint will help protect your tummy from further damage.

The splint can also help reinforce the corset muscle which can help alleviate back pain, hip pain, pregnancy-related abdominal pain, sciatica, SI joint instability, and much more.

Abdominal splinting is highly encouraged to support optimal fetal alignment. When your core is strong and working as intended to support a growing uterus, it places your baby in optimal alignment – head down and aligned vertically with the cervix and birth canal. However, if your core is functionally weak, then the splint can help pull the baby up and in, placing the baby in better alignment. This position puts the least amount of unbalanced stress on mom’s body during pregnancy, alleviating common pain symptoms. But optimal fetal alignment also sets the stage to place effective pressure on the cervix to stimulate and intensify contractions, therefore steadily progressing labor.

Wearing a splint even during contractions and the pushing phase of labor will help keep the baby in optimal alignment and helps you coordinate the necessary muscles to effectively push the baby out.

Yes. The splint will help pull the baby up and in which puts the womb in a tight position. However, this won’t give a baby in a poor alignment room to flip and turn later in pregnancy. So if you are late in your 3rd trimester and know your baby is not in optimal alignment, take a break from the splint and give the baby time to move. Once the baby is flipped and head down, then splinting can help keep the baby in the right alignment leading up to labor.

A splint is a great addition or alternative to an SI belt (a belt that helps stabilize a hypermobile pelvic bone). However, SI belts are not very comfortable during sitting or some movements. The abdominal rehab splint will support the pelvis in a very similar way, but is much more comfortable and flexible during movement.

Maternity support belts are not recommended because they don’t support the abdominal muscles well and require you to rest into the belt to get any support. Instead, an abdominal rehab splint will reinforce what your muscles are meant to do and will promote optimal alignment.

Orders & Returns

If you ordered a splint and it does not fit as expected, or you changed your mind, you may return or exchange it so long as it does not show signs of wear, and is in resalable condition.

*The quickest way to replace a wrong splint is to order the correct one from our website immediately, while you ship the incorrect splint back for a refund.
*Manufacturing Flaws:  If there is a manufacturing flaw in your splint, we are happy to replace it. Please call us to arrange a replacement.

Please Note:

  • All returns and exchanges do not include return shipping fees and will incur a $5 handling fee.
  • Refunds and exchanges must take place within 6 months of your original purchase.
  • In the case of a refund, you will receive the money back in the original method of payment.
  • Please include your packing slip and a description of why you are returning the item. If exchanging, please also include what item you wish to exchange it for.
Category: Orders & Returns

Yes, we do! Most of our international customers have received their splints in 2 weeks, however, bear in mind that we cannot control how long the item remains in customs. You will have to pay the cost of international shipping, which is a flat $15 fee.

Category: Orders & Returns

Our splints are custom made to fit a variety of shapes and sizes. It is important to accurately measure yourself for the best fitting splint in order for it to work properly. You can find those instructions here.

Category: Orders & Returns

The benefit to our abdominal rehab splints is that they were designed with rehab in mind. They are comfortable and supportive without being restrictive. If you choose to shop elsewhere for an abdominal splint, here is our recommendation.

Choose a splint that:

  • covers as much of the transverse abdominis as possible (from the lower 6 ribs to the top of the pelvis)
  • covers the navel (often the weakest area of the linea alba)
  • feels comfortable enough to be worn most of the day

Key Consideration in Fit:

  • The splint should feel “snug like a hug” and supportive, not tight and restrictive.
  • The splint should allow you to be able to sit and stand in alignment without difficulty.
  • The splint should always reinforce the feeling of a connected core.
  • The splint should make symptoms improve not worsen.
Category: Orders & Returns

If within the US, it should take 3-5 business days. Occasionally we are back ordered in a specific splint or style and in those cases, we will notify you via email if your splint is going to take longer than our standard shipping estimations.

International shipping is completely dependent on the customs in your country. Sometimes international shipping arrives within a week but sometimes it is longer and out of our control.

Category: Orders & Returns

FAQs about Online Appointments

  1. You need to have a computer or device that supports our video chat platform (see details).
  2. You book your appointment online just like any other doctors appointment.  (Our system will be sure you are adjusting for time zone differences.)
  3. You will receive and email reminder with a link to access your appointment.
  4. At the time and date of your appointment, click on your link.
  5. Kelly will meet with you, listen to your story, assess your alignment, address your symptoms and give you strategies specifically focused on your concerns to create a personal plan to move you forward.
  6. We will record your appointment and send you the recording to review after your appointment.

We offer several different types of appointments with different fees attached.

  1. 30 min Online PT Consults = $100
  2. 60 min Online PT Appointments = $200
  3. 60 min Birth/Trauma Processing Appointments = $200
  4. Discounted 3 session and 5 session packages are also available

Learn more about our different types of appointments HERE.

This is your time with Kelly and you can use it anyway you desire.  Most clients schedule appointments with the following goals in mind:

  1. 30 min Clinic Consult: To meet with Kelly prior to signing up for an online rehab course to ensure the best course of action for your specific symptoms, history or concerns. A 30 min consult can also be helpful as a follow up to a previous session or to discuss just 1-2 specific concerns.
  2. 60 min Clinic Session: Kelly can hear your history, address your alignment, problem solve compensations, give specific strategies and create a personal progress plan.  You can add these sessions to your online program for extra support and guidance or you can work with Kelly 1:1 for a series of Online Clinic Sessions to help you with accountability and to work alongside you as you progress through your rehab journey.  We offer package discounts and can work with you as frequently as once a week or once every other month depending on your goals and preferences.
  3. 60 min Birth/Trauma Processing Session- Often the condition of your core is a result of a trauma.  The Tummy Team believes that processing this trauma with a specialist can be key to your healing process.  Kelly can walk you through the traumatic event and help you reconnect to your body in a very gentle and nurturing way to support your overall healing.
  4. 60 min Professional Training Session: The Tummy Team trains medical, birth and fitness professionals world wide. Kelly offers specific training sessions to help you learn more about what we do and can specifically help you problem solve client concerns you may have your clinical setting.  The Tummy Team provides extensive professional courses as well at
  5. 3 and 5 session packages- Kelly can work with you for several sessions to help you meet your personal goals.  Kelly can progress your rehab journey, create a specific fitness plan, problem solve complications and simply encourage and support you on your personal core rehabilitation journey. Our packages help you get more sessions at a discounted rate.

Kelly Dean is a licensed physical therapist who graduated from University of North Dakota Physical Therapy with a Masters of Physical Therapy in 1997. She worked for over a decade as a neuro specialist working with brain injury, stroke rehab and neuromuscular rehabilitation in the hospital, rehab facility, outpatient and home health setting. After being diagnosed with a 6 finger wide diastasis with no rehab options made available to her, she shifted her focus and dedicated all her training to functional core (and pelvic floor) rehabilitation. She created The Tummy Team in 2008 to meet a desperate need in the Physical Therapy community for the treatment and prevention of diastasis recti and the related functional core weakness symptoms. Kelly has designed a comprehensive rehab approach that not only closed her own diastasis but has helped thousands of clients around the world heal. Kelly has spoken at Medical Schools, National and International medical conferences and has created several comprehensive professional training courses to help train fitness, rehab, and birth professionals internationally. Kelly has the perfect match of education, experience, compassion, creativity and communication skills to effectively help clients online. To learn more about Tummy Team Founder, Kelly Dean, check out her story here.

Currently medical insurances do not cover online physical therapy. The Tummy Team is able to bill your HSA/FSA card and provide you with documentation for reimbursement. We work hard to keep our prices reasonable so you can work with a specialist no matter where you live or what type of insurance you have.

This really depends on you. If you are doing one of our comprehensive online physical therapy programs, you may only need 1 individual PT appointment. Some clients do 1-3 appointments with their online program and other clients work with Kelly once a week or every other week for 3-5 sessions. Kelly can work with you, consider your rehab needs and your budget and help you find the right fit. Even 1 session can be incredibly helpful in your personal rehab journey.

You will need a computer, tablet or phone that has a camera and microphone and can connect to our Any Meeting Online Conferencing Platform.

After your appointment has been paid for and scheduled you will receive a confirmation email from The Tummy Team with some information to set up your computer for the appointment. Follow the instructions in this email to be sure you are set up for your meeting.

You will also receive an additional email from The Tummy Team inviting you to our Any Meeting Online Conferencing Platform. You will get a reminder invite email the day of your Online Clinic Appointment as well. This email includes the link you will need to connect to your appointment.

To make sure you are properly set up for your appointment, preview the setup videos below. You will also receive these in an email when you schedule an appointment with us.

Our scheduling system automatically adjusts for your timezone. If there are no appointments available to that work for your schedule, please reach out directly to Kelly Dean ( so she can work with you to find a time that will work for both of you. We understand that there is a need for core rehab specialist internationally, we are happy to adjust our schedules to help you get the care you need.

Typically we instruct clients in our courses to wait until week 3 of the course to schedule your first session. Most of the initial questions are answered in those first few weeks of videos and then we can spend our time focused on customizing your personal plan. However, if you have a complicated history and have concerns or questions you want answered prior to starting then schedule your first appointment after you want your intro videos in week 1 of your course. After your first appointment with Kelly, she will recommend the best time to do any additional appointments based on your needs and your goals.

While Kelly can work with you on anything core or pelvic floor related, most commonly these are the areas that are addressed in an Online Physical Therapy Appointment.

  • Concentration on your personal experience and history.
  • Evaluation of your sitting, standing, walking and bending postures.
  • Instruction in proper core and pelvic floor activation and integration strategies.
  • Recommendations of key muscle releases to treat your specific compensations patterns.
  • Problem solving difficulties you are having in your rehab journey.
  • Addressing any unique concerns you may have.
  • Development of a personal plan to progress your specific rehab process.
Purchase a Splint!



Interested in our programs? View our online programs here or take the online program questionnaire here.
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