When discussing muscle soreness we need to start off by differentiating between the 2 main types of muscle soreness:
Immediate muscle soreness is typically felt during or immediately after exercise. This type of soreness is caused by lactic acid, a metabolic waste. The acid causes a burning sensation that can get worse with more time under tension
Delayed muscle soreness, also referred to as D.O.M.S., signals an adaptive reaction of the body to intense exercise; typically felt 24-48 hours after the exercise session and dissipating after about 72 hours
DOMS has been attributed to microscopic tears in the muscle & surrounding connective tissue following eccentric exercise (for example: the part of a biceps curl when you are straightening your arm back towards the floor, away from your chest).
Exercisers who experience DOMS are usually individuals who have increased the intensity, frequency or duration of their workouts OR participate in an unfamiliar activity; as well as individuals who are just beginning and exercise routine or have undergone a significant lapse in training and are re-engaging in exercise.
DOMS has been shown to produce rapid adaptation responses, meaning that muscles will quickly adapt to a specific intensity level. Once you experience Delayed soreness, you should not experience it again until you increase the intensity or duration of the given exercise or activity!
Dealing with soreness: there are a few options that have shown to have a mild positive impact if initiated immediately after intense or unusual exercise
Massage: massage services are now being offered at the UAB rec center, stop by membership or email firstname.lastname@example.org for more informaiton on massage services!
Stretching: UAB campus rec offers 2 free stretching classes each week (Wednesday and Friday at noon in studio 1)
Cryotherapy: the topical application of ice
Non-steroidal, anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs)
BUT the only thing that has been shown to truly help minimize the effects of DOMS is to practice slow increases in intensity over time!
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