Delayed-Onset Muscle Soreness or DOMS is pain and stiffness in muscles from a few hours to a few days after exercise, particularly if you have increased the level of activity from your usual regime. The pain is often felt 24 to 72 hours after the exercise but can vary slightly.
Why do we get DOMS?
When muscles are stressed more than usual, or in a new way, it can cause microscopic tears in the muscle fibres, this results in inflammation and causes muscle soreness or stiffness. DOMS was previously believed to be caused by lactic acid build up. This has been disproven and lactic acid is not believed to be a factor in DOMS.
How Can I Treat DOMS?
Remedial massage is an excellent way to treat DOMS and can reduce the length and severity of the symptoms. Remedial massage is able to relax the muscles and help remove built up inflammation. Some studies have showed that DOMS was significantly less for the remedial massage group. Massage was also shown to have significant effects on patients for 1-4 days post exercise.
Can I Prevent DOMS?
It is possible to minimise the chance of DOMS occurring. Here are some suggestions below:
* Drink plenty of water
* Increase your sets, reps and weights by no more than 10% per week
* Cooling down is very important
* It’s best to slowly increase your activity time rather than large increases
* Have remedial massage pre and/or post big workouts
Have I Done Damage?
If the symptoms are in fact DOMS then it should subside over a few days and there has been no lasting damage. If the symptoms continue after 4-5 days it’s a good idea to consult a remedial massage therapist and have the issue assessed.
If you would like to booking in to see one of our remedial massage therapists at Melbourne Natural Therapies give us a call on 03 9645 9923.