Anyone who takes part in regular strenuous exercise can quite often recall experiencing intense aching pain in their muscles afterwards. This pain can often last for days and in some cases even weeks thereby reducing your ability to perform at the same high level during subsequent exercises and can also reduce muscular strength and stamina.
Delayed onset muscle soreness or DOMS as it is commonly referred to is often the result of the tears that are produced within the muscle when it is exercised and a buildup of toxins such as lactic acid which occurs as a result of the oxidization process which takes place when the muscle is exercised. Usually the body is quite efficient at filtering out these toxins and repairing the muscle fibers however if this pain persists indefinitely then it may be likely that you are suffering from Muscle Knots.
Muscle Knots (or Myofascial Trigger Points as they are referred to by experts) occur when muscle fibers which have contracted during exercise are unable to release and return to their resting state, they are in effect stuck in a tensed position causing incredible tenderness. Knots vary widely in size from that of a pinhead in small muscle groups such as those found in the hands or feet, to the size of a golf ball in larger muscle groups. Often the cause of accidents, postural stress or over stimulation the pain resulting from muscle knots can either be latent, and so is only painful if pressure is applied to them or active whereby they form on or near a nerve and so constantly relay pain signals to the brain.
Fortunately treatment for this condition is widely available from a number of sports therapists across the country; Sports Therapy Scotland, Pure Sports Medicine and Fit For Sport to name a few. The most common and effective treatment provided by therapists is Sports Injury Massage Therapy, which works deep in the muscles helping to realign the muscle fibers and connective tissues, and to filter out toxins such as lactic acid. Soft tissue manipulation not only loosens the knot and aids muscular repair but is also incredibly effective at increasing joint mobility.
However do not expect to have a pampering experience complete with scented oils by candle light, quite often Sports Massage Therapy can be painful, although it is often described by those who have experienced it as a ‘good pain’. Almost like having a splinter in your finger, it can be painful getting it out however once it is the relief is instant.
There are number of people who may be a bit skeptical of the benefits such treatment can bring. Just ask any serious sports person and you will more often than not find that they are strong advocates of massage therapy, and if it’s good enough for them then why not give it a go.