What Causes Muscles to Feel Sore?
Sore muscles can often be the result or a hard workout or engaging in a lot of manual work.
One of the consequences of strenuous activity is the buildup of lactic acid in skeletal muscles. Lactic acid is a byproduct of muscle metabolism, which in normal, but lactic acid can irritate muscles and result in muscular soreness and discomfort.
Sometimes muscle soreness occurs soon after a workout and doesn’t seem that bad, but gets considerably worse the next day. This is called delayed onset muscle soreness, or DOMS, and can last for a few days. DOMS is many times worse for people who are not physically fit or for others who have had a layoff from physical activities.
Lactic acid is metabolized within 24 hours after a workout. DOMS can also be related to inflammation and the subsequent post-activity muscle repair and building. Some active players are white blood cells and prostaglandins. The damage is cleaned out, repaired and the muscles are built up again. This whole process can take five days. If you have a workout just as hard in 2 days, it will be almost impossible for your body to make gains. This is why athletes who work out too hard and too frequently can have a decrease in their performance and an increase in their chance of injury.
I believe that it is a fallacy that you have to push yourself to muscle soreness to build muscle. This has been a hot topic of debate among athletes and part of the problem is that everyone doesn’t respond the same exact way to various workouts. I found that when I would push myself to muscle soreness, I had to take too much time off to recover. When I would work out hard without subsequent muscle soreness, I didn’t have to have so much down time to recover and that is when I made the most long-term gains.
Pre-workout stretching doesn’t seem to reduce DOMS, but I personally have found that warming up by increasing my core body temperature with moderate pre-workout activity and then cooling down with mild post-workout activity reduces DOMS.
Warming up increases collateral circulation and it is my belief that less lactic acid will then form when more oxygen is getting to the muscle cells.
Cooling down prevents lymphatic fluid buildup and toxins from accumulating in muscle tissue and I believe also reduces subsequent muscle inflammation.
I have also found that a light and non-strenuous workout the next day can help to alleviate some DOMS by flushing out the muscles.
A post workout massage can also flush out toxins, accumulated fluid and lactic acid. It is always advisable to drink water after a massage to aid this process.
The Use of Tourmaline-Infused Fabrics for Athletes
FIR Industries advocates tourmaline-infused garments to be worn during and after workouts, as well as using Tourma®Sleep at night.
It has been well documented scientifically that nanometer particles of tourmaline give off three distinct energies.
Tourmaline Energy # 1: Thermal-Photonic Conversion
This is the energy conversion of body heat into far infrared energy. This occurs on the surface of the tourmaline. The smaller the particle size, the greater amount of far infrared is produced per gram of tourmaline. Far infrared energy can increase blood oxygen levels and blood flow, stimulate angiogenesis, increase ATP formation in mitochondria which can accelerate cell repair and healing. All of these can reduce muscle soreness.
Tourmaline Energy #2: Negative Ions
These are generated by tourmaline when it is in contact with kinetic energy. This can be from pushing, pulling, stretching, striking, rubbing or oscillating. This is called a piezoelectric effect. Negative ions will make the tissue more alkaline, which is a healthier cell environment than an acidic environment. Negative ions also stimulates angiogenesis, blood flow and higher blood oxygen levels. Negative ions scavenge free radicals, reduce oxidative stress and reduce inflammation. All of these above mentioned benefits will tend to reduce muscle soreness too.
Tourmaline Energy #3: A Pyroelectric Effect
A mild therapeutic flow of electrons are also produced by the tourmaline particles, with a rise or fall in temperature. Tourmaline particles also generate a therapeutic energy field, since they have a north pole (negative) and a south pole (positive). This energy field may be the most therapeutic of the three energies. Tourmaline generated energy fields are related to the Schumann Resonance, which is between the earth and the ionosphere. That resonance is 7.83Hz and is referred to as the earth’s “heartbeat” or “pulse”. There hasn’t been an appreciable amount of research on this energy, as there has been with far infrared and negative ions, but we intend to make this energy our prime focus of our planned research.
Tourmaline is the mineral that works from the outside in, not the inside out. The only thing that enters the body is energy, so there is not even the slightest chance for an athlete to have a positive drug test, since no molecules enter the body.