What is a muscle knot? why does it happen? What you can do to relieve it.

Muscle knots are actually hyperirritable spots in muscle or fascial tissue [bands or sheets of connective tissue] known as myofascial trigger points," says Charleston. Trigger points typically fall into one of two categories: Active: These activetrigger points produce intense pain in the body.

Treatment – what to do if you already have muscle knots:

  • Rest – If you’re in pain, it is your body’s way of saying it needs a break. Maybe, you take a few days away from the computer or a few days away from the spin bike. You need a break from whatever is causing the pain.

  • Massage – Massage Therapy is not only great for prevention, but a good clinical massage therapist can help relieve that muscle pain, break up the adhesions, and recommend self-care that you can do on your own.

  • Physical Therapy – If you have been in pain for a while, physical therapy can really help. Not only will the treatment consist of manual therapy like massage and stretching, but the therapist can help identify the underlying causes, and give you a home exercise program to keep you healthy after therapy. Also, some PTs are trained in specific modalities that may help such as ART, Dry needling, and Graston.

  • Stretching – Gentle movements by going through your full range of motion can be very helpful. Do not push stretches too hard without discussing first with a Physical Therapist, Massage Therapist, or Athletic Trainer. You can over-stretch, and just because a muscle is hurting, doesn’t mean it needs to be elongated. Sometimes the opposite is true. However, gentle, full-body movement is usually a good idea as long as it is pain-free.

So, move around. Get a massage. Go to bed a little earlier. Drink more water. Your body will thank you!

If that doesn’t help, schedule a complimentary injury screen with your local Athletico to find out what’s causing your pain.