Effect of progressive prone plank exercise program on diastasis of rectus abdominis muscle in postpartum women: A randomized controlled trial


  • Eman Awad Beni-Suef University, Egypt
  • Ali Mobark Beni-Suef University, Egypt
  • Ahmed A. Zidan Beni-Suef University, Egypt
  • Hamada A. Hamada Cairo University, Egypt
  • Tamer Shousha University of Sharjah & Cairo University, United Arab Emirates


Diastasis rectus abdominis, Inter-rectus distance, Rectus Abdominis, Ultrasonography, Measurement, Prone plank exercise


Diastasis of Rectus Abdominis (DRA) muscle is a concerning health issue that commonly affects female within pregnancy and postpartum time, persistent lower back pain and pelvic instability are common consequences to DRA. Thus, this study was conducted to examine the effect of progressive prone plank exercises on narrowing the inter-Rectus distance (IRD) in postpartum women diagnosed with (DRA). A prospective, randomized, single-blind, controlled trial was conducted at the Faculty of Physical Therapy Clinic of Beni-Suef University. Fifty postpartum women presented with (DRA) of at least 2 finger widths assigned into 2 equal groups (A&B). A Toshiba Xario100, 8–12 MHz ultrasonography was used to accurately measure IRD before and after 8 weeks of the exercise program. Group (A), received progressive prone plank exercise program and advice relevant to DRA as well as wore abdominal binder, while group (B) continued their ordinary lifestyle after receiving advice and wearing abdominal binder as group (A).The study results revealed a statistical significant decrease within each group and between groups in IRD (p < .05) above and below the umbilicus both at rest and during Rectus Abdominis (RA) contraction, with a significantly narrower IRD in favoured of participants of group (A) (p < .05). To sum it up, progressive prone plank exercise program is very effective in decreasing IRD in postpartum women presented with DRA.


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Awad, E., Mobark, A., Zidan, A. A., Hamada, H. A., & Shousha, T. (2021). Effect of progressive prone plank exercise program on diastasis of rectus abdominis muscle in postpartum women: A randomized controlled trial. Journal of Human Sport and Exercise, 16(2proc), S395-S403. Retrieved from https://www.jhse.ua.es/article/view/2021-v16-n2-proc-effect-progressive-prone-plank-exercise-program