The Tupler Technique® was created by Julie Tupler, a registered nurse, certified childbirth educator and fitness instructor in the United States. She is the author of two books: Maternal Fitness and Lose Your Mummy Tummy and sits on the advisory board of Fit Pregnancy and the Women’s Sport Foundation. She is internationally recognised as a leading expert in diastasis rehabilitation and her programme is supported by research conducted by Columbia University‘s Department of Physical Therapy
A study was conducted at Columbia University Program in Physical Therapy. Results demonstrated that the women utilising the Tupler Technique® exercises had a smaller diastasis than the control group who did not do these exercises. — Journal of Women’s Health Physical Therapy Volume 29, No. 1, Spring, 2005
What is a “Diastasis Recti”?
“Diastasis” means separation. So it is a separation of the “recti”, the rectus abdominis muscles in your abdomen. The two strap-like rectus muscles run down the centre of your tummy and are the muscles you see in a “six pack”. They run from your breastbone down to your pubic bone and are attached to each other by a thin connective tissue called the “linea alba” (white line). When these muscles separate, the connective tissue that joins them stretches sideways. The more it stretches sideways the thinner and weaker it becomes and the worse the diastasis becomes.
What causes a diastasis?
Any repetitive forward forceful movement against the linea alba can create a diastasis. Two causes affecting both men and women are abdominal weight gain and doing repetitive exercises like situps or “crunches” without also working to strengthen the deeper core muscles of the abdomen. However, the most common cause affecting women is pregnancy. 70% of women who have had a baby will also have developed a diastasis yet most mothers are not aware they have one and so the condition goes untreated. Ask yourself whether you “showed” earlier in your second pregnancy or whether you still look a little or a lot pregnant following your last pregnancy?
How does a diastasis put you at risk?
The rectus abdominis forms part of the support system for the back and protects your organs. When the muscles separate this support system is weakened (in fact the resulting “mummy tummy ” or ”man gut” is actually your protruding organs). Over time a diastasis recti can lead to lower back pain, pelvic instability and an increased risk of developing a hernia.
How do I know if I have one?
A diastasis can be checked both during and after pregnancy. The object is to determine how many fingers will fit in the space between the two recti muscles. You also want to determine the condition of the connective tissue. The deeper your fingers will go towards your spine, the weaker the connective tissue. If you feel a pulsing while you are checking, this is a sign of very weak connective tissue. Click here for how to check for a diastasis.
What are the benefits of following the Tupler Technique® programme?
We recommend a six week commitment to the programme. You may not entirely close the diastasis in this time, but you will definitely see improvement within six weeks. You will also tone and flatten your tummy, reduce your waist size, strengthen your pelvic floor and may relieve any back problems you are having.