Many people experience muscle knots (or what the doctors call “myofascial trigger points.”)This is an unpleasant but unfortunately very common experience. It happens when some of the muscles in the body become constricted, such as after rigorous activity or even from falling asleep in the wrong position.
Some people from the medical community believe that muscle knots are caused when the body doesn’t relax a muscle. The body naturally tenses and relaxes a muscle, for example when a person lifts a weight or runs his arm and leg muscles will undergo an on and an off cycle. However, if this cycle is done too quickly the muscle will start having spasms, which eventually leads to muscle knots.
Another theory is that muscle knots is caused by high levels of protein in the connective tissue that can be found around the muscle. This theory was proposed when some of the muscle knots removed by surgery were examined in the laboratory.
Luckily muscle knots are relatively easy to treat. Many people say that regular massages help to relieve the pain and to “relax” the knot. Others say that it helps to apply a hot or cold pack to the affected area, though the relief is temporary. There are also muscle paint ointments that can be applied to the muscles, which create a soothing warm sensation. Some spas and health clubs also offer electrical stimulation treatments. Unfortunately all of these treatments can only relieve the pain and do not actually treat the muscle knots.