When you ask someone to measure something for you and accurately report the measurements back what would you accept as results? Weight in kilograms, grams or lbs. Height in cm, meters or feet and inches. Distance in kilometers, miles, millimeters, yards and ….erm…fingers.
Can you think of any situation where you would accept “2-3 fingers” as an accurate measurement? So why do we still do this when it comes to measuring Diastasis Recti? You know you’ll be measuring progress regularly so you’ll want a fairly accurate measurement and 2 of someone else’s fingers just isn’t one.
One of my clients went to get her 6 week’s check-up a few weeks ago and the midwife measured “2 fingers” of separation. When I then see my client a week later and show her how to measure her own separation she measures 3 fingers.
Now she panics, MY DIASTASIS GOT WORSE! A WHOLE FINGER WITHIN A WEEK!!! She starts to think of, and list, all the things she has “done wrong” in the past week.
As if having a shiny new baby isn’t stressful enough, right?
Of course her separation hadn’t actually gotten any worse. Her midwife just had sausage fingers and my client is an athlete. So their fingers are not actually the same size. Even if you have always measured your own DR you have to realise that your fingers can get bigger during the pregnancy and they can then take a little while to get back to normal size post-natal. In other words, your fingers don’t always stay the same size.
So here’s what I do with my clients; They ALWAYS measure their own DR, I show them how to do it properly and explain exactly why we do what we do. And then we use a tape measure to measure the finger(s) so we have an accurate measurement in millimeters.
This, in my humble opinion, is the ONLY way to do it. I get too many emails from women with tiny hands claiming they have 5+ fingers of separation. I have big man-hands, 5 fingers is HUGE!!!
This is what I think of when someone says 5 fingers.
So, to get that horrible image out of my head, I always get people to use a tape-measure to get an accurate measurement.
Have a look at the video below to see how you should measure Diastasis Recti. If someone else is measuring for you, please ask them for a measurement in mm so you have an accurate record and can measure your progress properly.
In this video I have Ashley, whom you might recognise from some of the exercise videos, measure her own DR.
Take care and, as always, give me a shout if you have any questions or comments.