The Perfect Diastasis Recti Brace!

NOTE:  The brace I reviewed in this post is no longer available.  I hope to add some other solutions to my Diastasis Recti From a Mom’s Perspective Page soon.  I had a reader suggest this brace from PainReliever.com as an alternative.

*******

I feel like shouting from the roof of my house!  FINALLY!  Finally, I’ve found a brace that covers my diastasis completely, stays put, isn’t too bulky, and is comfortable!  YIPPEE!

OK, a little background for those of you who don’t know what I am talking about…

About a year ago, I did something I swore I would never do…I posted pregnant belly pics.  For most people that’s no big deal.  For me, it was huge…literally.  I have what is called a diastasis recti, which means in layman’s terms a split in my stomach muscles.  My split is complete from top to bottom.  I always look pregnant to some extent.  It is a condition that is very difficult for me to deal with emotionally and physically. Someday I hope to have the surgery to correct it, but that someday is not now.

So, I told you in my Pregnant and Huge post that I wore something SIMILAR to the brace pictured there.  However, I didn’t realize how very UN-similar what I owned was to that brace until I actually purchased the brace in that post.  You see, the brace I did own was worn out.  I needed something new, so I ordered a new brace from PainReliever.com.  I was so excited to try this new brace because it looked so much sturdier than the one I did own.  The difference was drastic and utterly AMAZING!

See for yourself…

Notice the bulge?

The bulge is gone!

My diastasis recti brace is actually listed as a “back support brace”; however, it also lists abdominal compression as one of its attributes.  And boy, let me tell you, it works!  The brace is 9″ wide, so even the largest diastasis is covered by the brace.  The velcro on the brace is ultra strong and the extra straps help compress my muscles even more.

And it is comfortable!  Now that is saying a lot!  Most of the braces I’ve worn outside of pregnancy I want to take off the second I put them on.  This one I wear day after day and never feel that way.  I will admit my back does get a bit sweaty, but it doesn’t soak through to my shirt, so I can live with that.

I know the price may seem a bit steep, but if you have a diastasis recti, you know what life is like always fielding the “when are you due” questions, not having your clothes fit right, and always feeling uncomfortable.  The way I feel wearing this brace is well worth the $47.91.

**Through a wonderful series of events I was able to receive my diastasis recti brace for free; however, I would not hesitate to spend the money to get another one (and probably will once I lose enough weight to justify a smaller size).**

I just cannot say enough good about this brace and what it has done for me!  I feel like things are more “together”.  I can bend and lift and not worry about doing even more damage to my muscles. My clothes fit better, and I just feel better.  Thank you so much, PainReliever.com!  I could just hug you!

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71 thoughts on “The Perfect Diastasis Recti Brace!

  1. I had noticed several years ago a huge bulge from my sternum to my belly button when I would sit up from reclining in my tub (the only time I do sit ups!). I had mentioned it to my ob before but he didn’t really comment. After your last post I had a checkup with my ob and mentioned it to him again and he agreed that I have the same condition. I have also had an umbilical hernia which was corrected and have now had my gall bladder removed. I now think I have another hernia or two. My bulge isn’t as extensive as yours, but it is there. I have been wearing a girdle-type device, but it is uncomfortable and I usually only wear it when I dress up for church. I do need something for every day use. Thanks for posting!

    • Katie,
      The Mummy Tummy splint just isn’t wide enough for my diastasis. It’s fine to do her exercises with, but not fine for every day wear. This brace actually has the strength and width to hold my muscles together. After reading your posts, I did want to tell you I’ve been in contact w/ a woman who is starting a program to help with D.R. and other issues, and she says even a D.R. the size of mine could be healed WITHOUT surgery. Food for thought, for sure…

      • Hi My diastisis is huge and very depressing, to say the least. How does one go about getting one of these free, as I’m off work right now and can’t really afford it? I’ve been having extreme lower back pain and I do believe it’s coming from the diastisis, noone I’ve talked to or seen knows much about it, my doctor told me to lose weight, well that makes you feel great! any advice would be helpful without the expense. thanks Tricia

  2. I’m pretty sure I have the same problem. I wish I could get one from free. :) Especially since we are pretty strapped financially right now. Thanks for posting this. Now I can come back to this when I do have the money and follow the link to get one of my own.

  3. I recently heard of this condition on a blog called Beautiful after the Belly…I highly suggest you read about her non-surgical solutions..I hope it is helpful for you!

  4. I Have DR as well and always field the when are you due question, humiliating! I have been considering a splint from Mummytummy and purchasing the exercise cards. Does this splint pull the muscles together? or just compress your tummy. I have a girdle thing I can only wear for about an hour before I feel like I am going to pass out. I also think mine got worse after wearing my baby in the Ergo for 10 days straight. I think I pushed out my stomach to support her more making the problem worse. I would love to know if you are doing any of the recommended exercises and if it is helping?? Good Luck and Thank you Blessings~Carolynn

    • Carolynn,
      In my opinion, this brace does a much better job of pulling MY d.r. together than the Tupler splint. Because mine is so severe, the Tupler splint just didn’t cut it; however, I do use it when I do the back-lying exercises. I am in the process of doing a hard 6 weeks of Julie Tupler’s program to see what happens. I just purchased the guidebook to make it easier for me to follow (her book is great, but not so easy to follow when it comes to actually doing the sequence of exercises). In the past, I have managed to see some pretty decent results using the Tupler Technique. This will be the first time I actually document the results. I’m anxious to see how well I do!

  5. That looks like a great brace. I’ve had severe DR since I had my twins seven years ago (and two good-sized babies since). I found the Tupler Technique a couple of years ago, and I do it whenever I can remember (often sitting in church : ) I happen to be a pilates instructor, though, and pilates actually does basically the same thing in strengthening the transverse abdominus, which acts like a girdle holding in the DR. Since I just had another baby recently, I’m back at square one (or maybe about square two now), but pilates combined with the Tupler Technique eventually did give me back my flat tummy last time around. Before I got pregnant again, I was able to do regular crunches and ab work without getting that bulge. It definitely took a lot of time and work to get there, but it’s possible. That splint looks like it would really help prevent any further damage while you work to strengthen the TA.
    Now if I could just find something besides surgery to get rid of this skin–I’m not the only one with that problem too, am I?!

    • Gayle,
      That’s interesting you should mention pilates, since Julie Tupler actually says NOT to do pilates. Back when I found her book (2007), I was signed up to do a pilates class and quickly canceled so I wouldn’t do anymore damage. I’d love to hear your thoughts on this! I am working on doing her exercises as consistently as I can…hoping to see some good results!

  6. It’s funny–after I posted this I went to her website and started reading. I don’t think I’d ever actually read her stuff directly–just read about the exercises second-hand somewhere, so I was surprised (sort of) to read what she said about pilates. It might be a matter of better safe than sorry in that I could see that you could definitely do damage if you didn’t take it REALLY slowly and carefully. In my classes I really stress the importance of working at your own level. People don’t want to “look bad” in front of the more advanced participants, so they will try to do the advanced forms of the exercises way before they’re ready. The good thing about pilates is that it has so many levels built in to each exercise that you can find things that are helpful without being harmful. But if you don’t know what you’re doing or if you don’t know how to recognize the signs that you’re doing too much, I can see how pilates could really do some damage.
    In my own case, I knew about my DR and was always very careful to always watch my belly and look for the signature bulge to pop up. I would only do what I could do while keeping my TA engaged. I did think it was interesting that she said it was impossible to do crunches or lift the shoulders while engaging the TA. I have to say I don’t agree with that because I was definitely able to do it after a lot of work, BUT I really mean a TON of work over the course of a couple of years. And I can’t say for sure that I’ll ever be able to get there again. At this point I couldn’t possibly do a sit up without “popping out” : (
    I think I’ve done a lot of rambling, but my conclusion is probably that it would be safest to practice only with a private instructor if you have a true DR–and particularly one who is familiar with the problem and is willing to watch you carefully and help you work slowly. The exercises that I would do with a beginner are so similar to the TT exercises anyway since it’s all about strengthening the TA, but caution would be the key.
    As for myself right now, I’ve been doing a lot of cardio and circuit training but haven’t been focusing as much on my abs as I should. I’m thinking I might ask my husband if I can buy that tummy splint and Tuppler’s book or dvd for myself for Christmas so I can really get down to business : ) Can’t wait to hear more about your results!

  7. Hello…
    I’m like Katie, I have no idea how I found this site by=ut I’m glad I did too. I have the same problem. I just had my baby 7 months ago an I still look 5 to 6 months pregnant. An I hate it. I have the buldge starting at my belly buton on up. An my belly button is kinda sore around that area. But not to sore. Just when I press in around it. But I can live w it. My buldge is hard too. ugh… I’m tired of people asking me when am I due.

    So if I buy this brace it will get rid of my bulge w the brace on. My bulge is just a lil bit bigger than yours in the pic above. I just wanna wear a shirt an not look preggo w that buldge. An I knw I have to buy the dvd to help this problem too.

    • Tammy,
      The brace helps to hold the muscles in place. Do the exercises too! It will keep you from looking pregnant and also hold everything in place so you can heal. (mine is hard too because those are your internal organs pushing out.)

    • Hi there – in reading up on DR, I discovered that I may also have a hernia. My belly, like yours, bulges from (what used to be) my belly button upward. There is a DR support group on facebook that has already provided a wealth of knowledge on the topic of hernias and DR. Check it out, and I pray you find some answers as well!

  8. Sorry, to clarify from everyone – does this splint pull the sides together when you put it on, the same way the Tupleer splint does? or “simply” hold it in/together? I like the concept of the Tupler splint, where you can sort of feel your muscles being pulled toward each other when you put it on, but the band isn’t wide enough top to bottom to a) stay in place with all my flab and b) cover the whole DR from top to bottom.

    More info please! I am recovering from an 11’9 baby, all mine have been over 10 lb and it is starting to wear me out!
    Thanks

    • Molly,
      I do think this brace does an even better job of pulling my abs together. Now, I have found that it can’t handle all the flab I am dealing with (I just birthed an 11 pounder myself ;) ), but when wearing the brace, my diastasis is controlled much better than the Tupler splint was ever able to do.

  9. Hi.
    I am also working on repairing my diastasis and have been using the Tupler splint and I have had results. However, the splint is not as effective and lost it’s Velcro and shifts too much!
    I am from Canada – do you know if it is available in Canada? Shipping from the site is almost $50!
    Thanks

    • Kangaroo fitness in Canada has the Diastasis splint. Google it

      I too struggle with Diastasis recti. I’ve been using the splint for like a year and my baby will be two in June. I’m very fit workout 5 days a week and in order to be flat I have to use splint for hours. I’m so depressed and devistated. I have lots of scar tissue from csection and am afraid if I have surgery that I might get more scar tissue.

  10. Do you have any comments on the sizing for this? People always seem to say they wish they’d ordered smaller with the Tupler splint. I’m a little over one size but would be a lower size were my abs not bulging–not sure whether to order the size I’m measuring now (by about an inch) or the lower one. Thanks so much for sharing your story!

  11. When measuring yourself, did you measure your waist or over your belly button? There is a big difference for me, about 10 inches…

  12. My twins are a year old. My belly…a mess. LOL! I am convinced I have DR. My spouse is a Doctor of Physical Therapy and knows nothing of the condion or the splints. In school they merely mention it. It is difficult to determine how many finger widths the separation is on me as I am overweight. I am a size 18 and just over 5ft tall. I have a long torso. The tupler brace looks flimsy and like it wouldn’t cover my abdomen, like I would have a dough ball of belly hanging out from underneath. I really don’t like the idea of wearing two braces especially with the warm weather coming up. Amy how is your brace? How tall are you? Can you post a pic of you wearing it? I know modesty is important so can you put it over a tank top? Do you wear it while you do the exercises? Is it comfortable or does it ‘dig in’. Do you wear it 24/7? Can you sleep in it? Now that you have the splint and do the exercises…it it working? If you take off that splint and relax your belly..is it any different? How many inches in your waistline have you lost from these methods? I live with a skeptic, so I have to really research this. Who makes the brace (brand name) and what is the name of the brace you use? I like that it comes in nude. It looks very sturdy. Does the velcro wear out? Can you wash it? Can you sit comfortably in it without it digging? Thanks :0)

    • Heather,
      The exercises do work! The tupler brace IS flimsy…I only use it when doing the “crunches” from the exercises where you criss-cross the straps, not actually put the brace on. The brace I got through PainReliever.com is very sturdy and holds up very well. It doesn’t cut in, but it does work much like a back brace does in holding your body erect. It is great for using to exercise (walking and running and such) because it is so sturdy. I do not wear it 24/7. I’m just not that committed. I am 5’4″, so there is a chance the brace would be too wide for you. I believe there are less wide ones out there. I was looking for maximum coverage since my diastasis is so large. I wish they did teach this in medical school. I meet many, many women who are suffering from this.

  13. HI! :-)!I’m an Italian mum.I was searching something about Tupler tecquique and I landed here!
    I’d like to know if this kind of binder has the same effect of the Tupler’s splint..does it approximating (pulling together)the muscles?I dressed a binder that did’t approximated them and I wasted my money.

  14. So after reading all the blog entries– I’ve concluded this is the best brace/spint to purchase? I had large twins 19 years ago and two 10 lb plus after… I only recently heard about the Tuppler technique and haven’t really done exercises yet – (i tried to order the splint two weeks ago but they were on back order) after accident;y seeing your info – I will order this brace instead unless i missed something…??
    I have a huge goal as I’ve lost 20 lbs already– to wear my wedding dress for my 25th anniversary and repair my DR . Is it too late for me? My anniversary is in December. thanks for any encouragement…

    • Libby,
      I just received a unique opportunity to have Julie Tupler personally work with me. She thinks the brace she sells will work, but I did tell her I was skeptical. I am going to chronicle my 18 wk journey here on the blog. I’m willing to give it a go and see if it truly will work. I have been told time and again by those who know the Tupler Technique best that even my 8 finger-width gap could very well be repaired with just the exercises Julie Tupler created. Boy, I hope so!

      So, my advice right now is to get Julie’s splint and really give it a go. In fact, if you want to join me here as I chronicle my journey, I’d love to have you along!

  15. Are you going to have a biased opinion now? It is great that you are personally going to work with Tupler, but if it isn’t working for you , please tell us. I really hope her technique works and her brace. I got the feeling that you did not like her brace and highly reccomended the one this entire blog is about. Now you are suddenly recommending her product? I hope you aren’t selling out and committed to giving honest feedback. Sorry to sound harsh…I am not trying to be. It is just so hard to find honest opinions anymore. If the technique works and the brace, I will sign up for sure, but I am skeptical. How did Tupler find out about you and offer her services? Did she find this blog and contact you? I will be ‘tuning in’ to follow your journey. Good luck! :0) Post lots of pics!

    • Heather, It’s a long story and when I start the posts I will be telling it, but yes, you can depend I will offer my un-biased opinion AND there will be lots of pictures to prove one way or the other. Apparently, Julie has really changed her splint since I bought mine (back in 2007), and she says I need to DOUBLE-splint. I’m willing to give this a shot since the plastic surgeon basically told me he couldn’t do anything for me until I was done having children. It’s going to be hard work, but I really want to give it a good shot! I’d love to have you along!

  16. how do you order one of these and how long does it take to see a change in your stomach. I have a bulge like the lady up top in the red shirt and would like to get rid of it. I have tried working out and all. I can lose itches but that top bulge is still there..please help

  17. I look forward to hearing all about your results and progress with the Tupler Technique. And in particular how the belly bands compare. Good Luck

  18. Hi Amy,
    I will definitely get me one of these. I have seen this before and was hesitant at first but now that I know (sort of know=) someone who has tried it, I will for sure get one. After delivery of course (our 2nd baby=)

  19. I bought this brace. I must say that I am not impresssed with it at all. It rides up, even over a camisol. The bones in it make it uncomfortable to sit down. It isn’t wide enough for my torso. I still have about 5 more inches that I want covered. You know what I love? Those neoprene belts that you can wear for working out. They run about ten bucks and you can get them just about anywhere. They bend with you and really pull you in. I wear two of them at once. Plus, they do make you sweat a little. When I put them on I feel tight and my posture instantly changes. The two I have are from Ballys and Everlast. They are basic;y the same product, but a different brand. They are more like a brace than anything. Look for them in the fitness section of the store. they can be found with hand/ankle weight s and yoga mats. I don’t mean to hijack this thread..I just really don’t like this brace mentioned. Plus the neoprene ones are cheap and work a ton better. Good luck ladies. I will stay tuned. Oh and BTW, next Wednesday I have an appt with a reconstructive surgeon. I am hoping to get some answers. I asked my OBGYNO yesterday at my yearly check up about DR. Her reply? “What is diastasis recti???” She did write me a script for a consuklt though to have it checked out. I will let yuou all know what happens. Also, I foud a Daistasis Recti support group on Facebook. Great info there as well.

    • I’m needing to update all of these DR posts, but I ended up buying 2 of the new Tupler splints (I did not like the old ones) and while I didn’t have any trouble with the splint found in this post, the new Tupler splints are MUCH BETTER! I’m glad you have found something that works! Remember to “approximate your muscles when you tighten the belt so that they are in the right place. And it is funny you should mention talking to your doctor! I just emailed my old OB and told her she HAS TO tell people about this! lol

  20. I have come back to this website over and over again once I figured out that I have DR. I could never understand why, even though I was fit and worked out constantly, I never looked like I had a waistline and constantly looked like I was three months pregnant. I am now pregnant again and about to deliver in about three weeks. The DR is now so severe that in this pregnancy I have also developed a hernia that will have to be repaired. I am hoping to find a splint or something that I could wear to help rectify the situation. I am not sure about the Tupler splint as there seem to be mixed reviews. I was wondering what I could wear immediately after the delivery and for how long I should wear it…funny thing, I remember after I had my first child, my mom bound my belly with an ace bandage immediately after delivery. I couldn’t take it off except to shower for six weeks. People could not tell that I had even had a child….hmmm….maybe my mom wasn’t as crazy as I thought she was at the time….heehehehe

  21. Hi Amy,

    Thanks for your post, it is great to know that we are not alone!!!
    I have started to do the Tupler Technique for a week and half now.
    My DR was 1-2-1 (small one I know, but still look like a 4 months pregnant women even after I had baby 27 months ago).
    I am doing my exercises every day, following religiously the workbook and you know what… I already feel that something change. My DR is now 1-1.5-1.
    My only problem is the splint, that why I was looking on the internet and find your post.
    As you see I have a small DR but I am not feeling really covered with the Tupler splint. And after a week and half of use it’s already roll out at the back and make it uncomfortable. My back is really arched so I don’t know if the splint you are talking about will be better.
    I have had a post pregnancy (Belly Bandit) who did the same.
    What’s your experience in this area.
    Cheers

    • Hmmmm…I know people are having issues with the splints. Julie has come out with a new one, but I’m not sure yet if it is a better design. Where yours is such a small DR, I would think you might be better off using the splint only for the exercises and then just remembering to engage your transverse muscles throughout your daily activities. I think you will still see great results. :)

  22. Hi Amy,
    I read some of your post on this subject a few years ago. I have the same thing but not quit as bad. This summer I had 2 people ask me when I was due both in the same day!….I was at church and was so embarassed! I would have been due with Christian in 5 weeks so hearing the words “when are you due” made me just want to cry. I joined weight watchers because along with the split muscles I do need to loose weight! I lost 11# in 2 monthes then just this month desovered we are expecting baby #8!
    Its hard with wanting to post tummy pics on my blog when I look 4 months along at 7 weeks!
    Regular clothes have stopped fitting at 4 weeks along. Just the smallest “bloat” pushes everything outward and like you mentioned it hurts!

    Thanks for a great post…..well many posts on the subject!

    Peace and Love,
    Georgiann

    PS I know I don’t stop by to often but I think of you almost daily! You were one of the first blogs I started reading when I came to blog land about 3 years ago!

  23. I’ve spent years looking for braces that would help. I wasn’t sure what was wrong with me. I thought possibly I had an emotional issue after losing my last baby in the 8th month. I thought I was emotionally hanging onto my baby and couldn’t stop “looking” pregnant, no matter what I did. I finally went in to have a belly button hernia repaired this week and the surgeon told me I have Diastasis Recti and that it would have to be treated by a plastic surgeon and insurance doesn’t generally cover it.

    I ordered one of the braces you mentioned and I’m eagerly awaiting its arrival, but in the meantime, I’d be interested in hearing more about what you’ve learned about healing this condition without surgery. Thanks so much for posting!
    Debbie Francis

    • Oh, I am so sorry! Your doctor was right that insurance does not cover the surgery. However, I do think it can be healed with diligence and without surgery. I’ve not been as diligent as I should be with the Tupler exercises, but I do know they work. After the new year, I hope to get back to updating. :)

  24. It’s ok. It happened nearly 20 years ago – I had just never gotten any help or relief from Drs. and couldn’t understand why I couldn’t lose my belly. I even directly asked drs about my belly. One told me I just needed to go to bed hungry sometimes… wow. Finally, having the belly button hernia repaired led me to a surgeon who volunteered why my belly was like that. It helps knowing what’s going on. I’ll look into the Tupler exercises. Thanks :)

  25. What’s the reason the pictured abdominal brace is no longer offered? It looks great! I’ve had diastasis recti since 2007 and have yet to find an adequate brace.
    Any suggestions?

    • I went to search for the brace about a year ago and it was gone. I have no idea why they took it off the market. :( My advice is to look for something that is more like a hernia support (abdominal support I think they call them). Look for extra strength too. Right now, I’m just wearing a compression garment of sorts and working on my exercises.

      • I was doing a lot of research for braces for DR as well and I found this brace, its a Don Joy, not specific to painreliever.com. If you google search for DonJoy Elastic Lumbar Support you can find it on several websites. Just wanted to let you guys know the original one you showed is available, maybe just not at the original place you purchased it.

  26. I just found out that I have the same problem. Im so tired of looking like im pregnant but I cant afford surgery so im going to order the diastasis splint. im hoping that it will work. I haven’t seen a flat stomach since I was 15 after I had my first child.

  27. Amy,

    Did you prefer the tupler splint or the original (don joy) one that you wrote about in this post? I need to order one for my diastasis recti.

    Thank you,
    Darcy

    • Hi Darcy! I can’t find the Don Joy anymore and I have not tried the new Tupler splint (she has changed the design). I hate to recommend anything without trying it. You might try emailing Bethany at Fit2B studio and asking her opinion. (fit2b.us)

  28. I need one of these belts. The photo isn’t very clear here. I’m sure I can find this exact belt somewhere else on the internet. Can you please email me the details?