10 Of The Best Ways To Relieve Tight Muscles
When our bodies are performing well we can often not even notice all the hard work that our muscles are doing. However, as soon as we feel the effects of pain or tight muscles all our attention becomes focused on that part of the body.
Experiencing tight muscles is something that every bodybuilder will face at some time. Tight muscles can slow down our workout and impact on our day to day activities.
So what can we do to relieve tight muscles and get back to the business of muscle building as soon as possible?
Diagnosing Tight Muscles
How can you be sure that the symptoms you’re experiencing are due to tightness in your muscles? This checklist will help you decide if you are feeling muscle tension or something else.
- Your muscles feel as though they are pulling. You may experience sharp or constant pain.
- Your muscle pain is preventing you from participating in your everyday life. You may feel so bad that you need to stay in bed.
- Cramping or spasms may be affecting you. Your muscles may be twitching.
- You feel headachy or inflexible. Your tight muscles are limiting your movements.
If believe that your muscles are tight after reading through this checklist, read on to find ways to alleviate the pain. As always, if pain persists or becomes too unbearable, seek help from a medical professional.
Stretch It Out
When our bodies are in pain it can be hard to relax or remember to breathe properly. However, stretching, relaxation, and breathing can be an effective way to treat tense muscles.
This method may seem too simple, but it can really help to ease muscle pain.
Yoga techniques can help with stretching, breathing, and relaxation. These techniques can help to loosen up muscles and refocus you on your own breathing. Try getting into the habit of doing yoga poses every morning and night as part of your workout routine.
Did you know that cherry juice can help to reduce muscle stress and tension? Tart cherry juice has been shown to reduce pain. The juice can also help you sleep.
Add cherry juice to your diet to help manage muscle pain.
Even though the only thing you may feel like doing is crawling into bed when your muscles are sore, it is best for your body if you keep moving. If you can get outside and breathe in the fresh air, even better.
By remaining active and continuing to exercise (gently) you are also promoting the production of feel-good endorphins.
Take Vitamin D
Vitamin D deficiency can add to muscle pain and tension. Spending time in the sun can help boost your levels of Vitamin D.
Fortified milk, fish, and eggs are other good sources of Vitamin D.
Some people swear by acupuncture as an effective way to treat sore and tight muscles. Acupuncture is a traditional Chinese medicine which has been used to manage pain and treat illnesses for hundreds of years.
Acupuncture involves inserting very fine and delicate needles into the skin at selected pressure points. For those with a needle phobia – be assured that it does not hurt.
Relax in a Hot Bath
Take a hot bath and reduce stress levels while treating your muscle pain. The addition of a scoop of Epsom salt can help to relax your muscles.
You may also try adding a few drops of relaxing essential oils such as lavender.
Take Natural Herb Extracts
Valerian is a herb native to Europe and Asia. It is recognized for its ability to relax the body, reduce pain, and calm muscle tension.
Dried valerian root can be taken as a tea. Valerian Powder is also available in capsule form.
Have a Massage
Who doesn’t love a massage? And a vigorous and relaxing massage by a massage therapist can be a wonderful way to relieve sore muscles.
The official report from the American Massage Therapy Association is that massage “helps to relieve tense muscles and lengthens tight muscles”. But the fact that it feels good is also a huge factor in its favor!
Another natural remedy that you may like to try to relieve your muscle tension is cayenne pepper. Capsaicin, the naturally occurring active ingredient in cayenne pepper, is known to help reduce muscle and joint pain.
Many over the counter balms and creams contain capsaicin. Applied topically, the ingredient works directly on sensory nerves. Read the ingredient lists of muscle balms to find one which contains this magical ingredient.
The use of localized heat therapy to treat muscle pain can be very effective. A heat pad or hot water bottle applied directly to the area can ease soreness and tension.
Heat encourages blood flow to the area and helps your body relax. You can find heat pads designed to fit on certain parts of the body including the neck or shoulders. Don’t make the pad so hot that it burns your skin, but make it hot enough to have an effect on the pain.
Other Ways to Help Relieve Muscle Tension
There are many other ways to treat muscle tension and relieve the pain of sore muscles. Examples include staying hydrated (water is beneficial for all parts of the body, including your muscles), taking an over the counter pain reliever, and applying ice to the affected area.
Prevention is always better than cure. Know your limitations. It is important to push yourself when exercising but don’t go overboard. Be realistic about how much your body can handle without excessive stress.
For the dedicated bodybuilder, some muscle pain is an accepted part of the exercise routine. However, the slight pain of a good workout is a completely different ballgame from muscles that are sore from over stretching and working.
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