Everything about Muscle Knots
You have surely heard your Physio, Chiro or Massage therapist saying, “that is one huge knot” or your friends saying, “I’m all knotted up”. But what does it mean? Do muscles really form a knot and do they ever release?
This blog will help us gain a better understanding about these knots and will describe various treatments that can help us to release them.
It’s important to understand that the muscles in our body are layered one on top of the other and that they run in different directions. Due to this we are able to turn, twist and bend however we like. But sometimes, because of our lifestyle choices and constant prolonged posture, we tend to injure ourselves. If we keep repeating these habits, it can result in chronic injury and if combined with chronic dehydration we can lose mobility and flexibility. This can cause the muscles to stick to each other and adhere. This lump is called a muscle knot.
These muscle knots are common but not normal or harmless. Chronic stress leads to micro tearing of these muscle fibers and creates more scar tissue. If left untreated it results in losing range of motion, flexibility of the muscle and it will become difficult to reverse these changes. The good news is that you can work on the knot and there are various treatments available.
Rest- If the area is painful, take some rest and let it ease up.
Heat pack/ cold pack- Depending upon if it’s inflamed or not use heat or cold pack.
Massage- This will help to prevent knots from forming, help to resolve the original muscle knot/tightness and break the adhesion which will increase the mobility and flexibility.
Physiotherapy- If the area or muscle is painful, physiotherapy can help to reduce the pain. Physio can also identify the cause of the problem and provide you with the exercises to prevent it from recurring. With a home exercise program you can take charge and work on the muscle.
Stretch- This will prevent the muscles from adhering to each other. This is also helpful to maintain the range of motion and increase the flexibility of the muscle. But make sure that you are doing your stretches correctly and it is not painful. Always discuss the correct way to stretch with your physiotherapist.
Diet and hydration: Drink plenty of water and have a healthy diet. This will help lessen the chances of injury.
Lifestyle change: Stressful life and sedentary work does not help with muscular stress. Try to modify your work schedule to include some down time and get involved in some form of physical activity.
Take a break: Try to take a break in between work. Try to stand up if you spend a lot of time sitting or vice-versa.Get up from your chair and do a couple stretches. This will help the muscle to rest and support them better.
Hope this helps you gain a better understanding of muscle knots!