The Secret Behind Trigger Points
Have you ever felt painful tension in a muscle, particularly in your neck, back, or shoulders? Fear not because you are not alone. Almost all of us suffer from painful muscle tension at least once in our lives and knowing what this tension is and how it can be targeted is the key to alleviating that pain.
Trigger points are what cause the painful tension you feel. Trigger points are the knots or tight bands of restriction within or in between the muscles in our body that can cause us pain and limit our function. They can also be present in fascia; which surrounds our muscles and decreases both our mobility and our optimal muscle function because of the fact that these muscles are not able to shorten or lengthen effectively.
We all have trigger points or muscle knots in different areas of our body, but if we are not able to get the most out of our exercise program or these knots are causing us pain, then it’s important to address it.
There are two different types of trigger points. Latent trigger points are the knots that we all have. These only cause discomfort if pressure is applied to them but are not inherently painful. Active trigger points are the knots that cause us pain which can radiate to other regions of our body and can actually cause neck pain, back pain, knee pain, hip and shoulder pain.
Physical therapists are experts in how our bodies move and function. They are able to locate these specific trigger points causing us pain and release them through a variety of hands-on techniques to decrease pain and discomfort.