Prolonged muscle pain after engaging in a sport or a workout may point to something more sinister such as muscle injury. This article aims to share some tips to help relieve muscle pain caused by over-zealous exercising. Also known as delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS) by health professionals, muscle pains are quite common after exercise. This is especially true after participating in a new sport or workout routine.
Slow Start is the Best Way
Assuming you have not exercised for a while or if you are engaging in a new physical activity, you are quite likely to experience sore muscles after the workout. Your body is simply reminding you that muscles need time to recover and it does so through muscle pain and soreness.
The general rule is to start sedately and build your exercise program slowly over time. Just like babies, we should try to avoid running before crawling or walking, something our bodies will appreciate. Trying to be a superhero overnight makes little sense if it results in muscle pain and soreness.
How Long Does Muscle Pain Last After Exercise?
The muscle pain and soreness experienced after vigorous exercise usually subsides after a day or two. A word of caution: if the muscle aches remain after a few days of rest or become more intense, you may have sustained a serious injury.
If you experience muscle pain during a workout, it could indicate severe strain or injury. Additionally, if you experience fever, breathing difficulty or a stiff neck as well as muscle pain, cease the exercise and consult your health practitioner immediately.
5 Tips to Relieve Muscle Pain and Soreness
1. Start Eccentric Exercise Slowly – As mentioned earlier in this article, try to avoid pushing the limits of the first exercise session. Contractions occur when your muscles stretch under tension, in the “down motion” of a bicep curl, for example. To avoid unwanted muscle pain, increase intensity gradually.
2. Go to Cryotherapy or Take a Massage – A short session of whole-body cryotherapy can help correct muscle pain in no time at all. Sports or trigger-point massages also help to relax very tight and sore tendons and soothe away muscle pain too.
3. The Ice Pack Routine – If you are experiencing swelling or a warm sensation around a muscle or joint, it could indicate acute injury. Wrap an ice pack in a thin towel and place it on the affected area for about 15 minutes. Conversely, if there is no swelling, but muscles are just sore from exercise apply a heat pack for 15 minutes to help boost blood circulation.
4. Gentle Stretching Routines are Great – There are benefits to stretching after a workout. Continue to stretch your muscles for about 10 minutes after a workout to prevent muscle pain taking hold. Stretch Station specializes in gentle and passive stretching to help you find relief.
5. Continue with Light Exercise – Avoid ceasing the exercise session abruptly. Experiencing muscle pain after a workout is confirmation of muscle stretching, which means development over time. Gentle swimming or walking are both good ways to wind down. This should help disperse any lactic acid buildup too.
Patience and Common Sense, Not Bravado!
Quite right, if you want to avoid muscle pain and soreness, there are many things that you can do. Stretch Station helps you avoid injury while also providing a relaxing environment to wind down after a workout. Contact us to learn more. Enjoy your workout!