Have you ever thought about how wonderful your muscles are? You really should give them a second thought! They move us around and enable us to do all of the everyday things that make up our lives. If I were to write down here everything that muscles do for us it would be an almost endless list – most of the things on the list would be the little things that we do every second, minute, hour or day; but some would be amazing feats like running a marathon or winning Wimbledon (but, sadly, not leaping tall buildings in a single bound).
Amazingly, we can use our muscles for a huge range of movements and activities without them complaining. Well, most of the time! But there are times when we overuse our muscles, damage or injure them, or get a knot, and then our muscles let us know - through pain. The pain in a muscle is that muscle’s way of telling us to ease off, slow down or stop what we’re doing; it’s also a warning that if we continue through the pain things might get worse.
The pain is there to let us know that something is wrong. Admit it, it’s a really effective way of letting you know that you’ve hurt the muscle in some way. Often, despite the pain, you might choose to ignore it and continue with what you’re doing. This is often the case when it seems to be just a niggle. However, sometimes the pain in a muscle is so bad that it stops us in our tracks! That’s our muscle shouting “Stop doing that right now!!”; and so we do.
When this happens do you reach for the pain relief, wait for the pain to ease and then carry on as normal? That’s ok, but bear in mind that although the pain has gone, the problem might still be there. The painkillers have simply taken away the pain – they haven’t solved the problem and made the muscle better.
So, next time you hurt a muscle, think about getting the problem sorted out professionally. This will help to prevent further injury and help the muscle to heal; much better than just easing the pain and leaving the problem there.