The weather is turning for the better, and more and more people are beginning a new exercise program to jump start their summer health goals! Whether you are just starting to work out or have been working out for years, muscle soreness is a common part of the process. Delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS) happens when a person does a workout that is out of the body is unaccustomed to. The American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) concludes that DOMS is the side effect of the repair process muscles go through after microscopic trauma to the muscles after exercise. As a physical therapist and one who enjoys staying active, I know that muscle soreness can be both limiting and stressful. If you're looking to change your exercise regimen or are challenging your body to progress in your workouts, remember to always take care and caution when protecting your muscles.
Once the soreness happens there are ways to decrease the pain:
One common misconception about DOMS is that it is due to lactic acid accumulation, but lactic acid is not a component of this process. DOMS typically occurs 12-24 hours after activity, but can intensify 24-72 hours after the activity as well. It is the bodies response to being overworked and is different from an acute soreness, which is pain during the activity. If symptoms persist for more than a week or intensify to one specific spot versus generalized discomfort a visit to a health care provider is indicated.
Our staff of Physical Therapists and Athletic Trainers can help you get your program started or help you recover if you symptoms have gotten out of control.
Through our Orthopaedic Associates and the Therapy & Sport Center, Fort HealthCare’s Sports Medicine program provides comprehensive care from diagnosis to surgical or non-surgical treatment and rehabilitation. Our interdisciplinary team is made up of four orthopedic surgeons and six athletic trainers. Dr. Paul Schuppner, an orthopedic surgeon, completed a fellowship in sports medicine and is one of two in Jefferson County. The team works with you to develop treatment that is patient-centered and focused on maximizing your participation in the sport and physical activities you love.