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What is Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness?

What is DOMS?

DOMS  is delayed onset muscle soreness is muscle pain resulting from micro-trauma to muscles caused by unfamiliar or excessive exercise. Microtrauma (myofribril tears) resulting from exercise cause an inflammatory response, resulting in changes in the intramuscular fluid.

What Causes DOMS?

DOMS generally occurs with an increase in eccentric exercise such as running longer distances, downhill & plyometric exercises. It is commonly described as a dull ache in the muscles, sometimes occurring with stiffness & tenderness, which appears 24-48 hours post new or excessive exercise.



How to treat DOMS?

DOMS should be treated with active rest and anti-inflammatory measures such as ice. Research on applied heat for DOMS on back muscles has also shown to be effective.  Commonly with DOMs the more you move the affected muscle group, the less sore you will become. Deep tissue massage should be avoided for the first 24 hours, as well as excessive stretching and aggressive exercise. Compression garments and gentle massage have been shown to provide a reduction in severity and duration.

Symptoms of DOMS should reduce within 24-72 hours. If symptoms do persist more than 48-72 hours, the pain is affecting the joints and not just the muscles or the pain came on during exercise, see you osteopath for further advice and treatment.


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