Everyone knows that muscle soreness after a workout is a good sign. However, muscle soreness, also known as Delayed-Onset Muscle Soreness (DOMS), can be a sign that the muscles in your body have suffered some damage, according to the American College of Sports Medicine. These injuries usually trigger inflammation in the injured area. Explaining further, a professor in the University of South Carolina’s department of exercise science, Dr. Shawn Arent, Ph.D., CSCS, noted that during this process, fluid gathers in the muscles, which puts additional pressure on the damaged areas. This leads to muscle tightness and pain that develop within 12 to 24 hours after the workout.
While some degree of muscle inflammation is good for the body, it has to be done in moderation because severe inflammation may lead to many chronic diseases. Therefore, as Dr. Arent put it, we shouldn’t try to prevent the inflammation of the muscles; instead, we should seek ways to get such inflammation under control —and as quickly as possible. Therefore, this article will look at how you can ease muscle soreness after workouts.
5 Ways to Ease Muscle Soreness
As ironic as it sounds, the number one rule to easing muscle soreness is to keep moving around. The idea is to engage your body in an activity that is light and gentle. For example, you may want to take a brisk walk for an hour. For some, it may be riding a bike or even swimming.
Rest and Recover
You must factor your exercise days into your exercise routine. These days are crucial to recovery, as they give your body a chance to heal and replenish the lost energy.
Cautiously Apply Heat
If you still experience muscle soreness after 48 hours, you can try using heat on the affected areas. Heat will aid blood flow toward the muscles, easing the tension in the affected areas.
Get a Good Muscle Massage
Getting your muscle massaged will ease the soreness and the tension while increasing the range of motion and aiding the blood flow to the muscles. You can get a Swedish massage or even try tender-point acupressure, where the massage therapist applies pressure on the tender area and directly holds it.
Get Anti-inflammatory Drugs
Finally, you can get these drugs over the counter, which aid in reducing the swelling of the tender areas. For this, you can get aspirin, ibuprofen, or even naproxen.