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Old 10-13-2011, 05:32 AM   #1
Andrew Perlot
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Trying To Understand Muscle Knots/Tightness/Injury and Recovery

Hi.

I'm trying to gain a good understanding of the muscular/mobility issues I've dealt with periodically.

I've been watching, with some fascination, the videos at the Mobility Wod , which I think many of you are familiar with.

However, I feel I lack a basic understanding of some of the issues discussed.
I have a few questions, so if you can answer one or more, I'd appreciate any input.

1) What causes muscle to become tight/develop knots/tighten and restrict mobility? Is it always misuse/bad form? What about overuse? Can you be using a muscle properly and have it knot up anyway?

2) I got myself a lacrosse ball and have been working on some of my really knotted up/tight areas.

These areas feel like really taught band of painful-to-put-pressure-on-tissue that makes me feel like I'm rolling the ball over a raised bump in the smoother pavement that is the rest of my musculature.

This is what I'm assuming is being discussed when we're talking about knots.

My general approach has been to just knead my ball/my thumbs/and various other odd torture equipment into those bands of muscle. In some cases, they settle down and smooth out, but sometimes they don't seem to respond well. No matter how much I knead them they stay taut.

Sub Question 1: Is there a "best approach" to how to break up those knots? Rolling across or with the direction of the band of taut muscle?

Sub Question 2: What do you do when a knot doesn't seem to respond, no matter how much you work on it? For instance, I've got knots running through the inside pad (part that leads to my thumbs) of the hands on both hands. No amount of ball work seems to help.

3) In what situation does working with trigger points beat out general rolling?

4) I've tried using the bands, like in this video, but I just don't understand the purpose or what I should be feeling. It doesn't feel different than just sitting there with no band. Can anyone explain the band's purpose and how to make use of one?

Thanks.

Last edited by Andrew Perlot; 10-13-2011 at 05:37 AM..
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Old 10-13-2011, 06:05 AM   #2
Andrew Perlot
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Re: Trying To Understand Muscle Knots/Tightness/Injury and Recovery

Also, one of the worst areas for me in my right hip and the area right above my right butt cheek. There are several spots in there that are incredibly painful to work on.

I'm wondering if the best strategy is to just take the lacrosse ball, lay on it, and let my weight sink me onto the most painful spot, or if I should make an effort to actually roll around/over the worst spots.
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Old 10-13-2011, 11:57 AM   #3
Elizabeth Hall
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Re: Trying To Understand Muscle Knots/Tightness/Injury and Recovery

Interested in the responses. I have a huge not in my thight I've had for about 20 years :/
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Old 10-14-2011, 03:13 AM   #4
Tim Huntley
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Re: Trying To Understand Muscle Knots/Tightness/Injury and Recovery

Hi Andrew,

We recently had a guest post at My Athletic Life (by Patrick Ward) called Trigger Point 101.

You definitely do not have to be doing something incorrectly to develop knots, more often it is the result of overuse.

My understanding is that the technique for trigger point is different than with foam rolling (you stay in one spot for about 15 seconds and then move to an adjacent spot about 1/2 to 1 inch away along the length of the muscle - rinse, repeat). Don't roll across the muscle fiber, but move up and down the length.

Hope this helps.

...Tim
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Old 10-14-2011, 12:36 PM   #5
Megan Zetter
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Re: Trying To Understand Muscle Knots/Tightness/Injury and Recovery

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tim Huntley View Post
Hi Andrew,

We recently had a guest post at My Athletic Life (by Patrick Ward) called Trigger Point 101.

You definitely do not have to be doing something incorrectly to develop knots, more often it is the result of overuse.

My understanding is that the technique for trigger point is different than with foam rolling (you stay in one spot for about 15 seconds and then move to an adjacent spot about 1/2 to 1 inch away along the length of the muscle - rinse, repeat). Don't roll across the muscle fiber, but move up and down the length.

Hope this helps.

...Tim
That's a great article.
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Old 10-18-2011, 05:52 AM   #6
Andrew Perlot
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Re: Trying To Understand Muscle Knots/Tightness/Injury and Recovery

Thanks for the article. Really informative.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tim Huntley View Post
Hi Andrew,

We recently had a guest post at My Athletic Life (by Patrick Ward) called Trigger Point 101.

You definitely do not have to be doing something incorrectly to develop knots, more often it is the result of overuse.

My understanding is that the technique for trigger point is different than with foam rolling (you stay in one spot for about 15 seconds and then move to an adjacent spot about 1/2 to 1 inch away along the length of the muscle - rinse, repeat). Don't roll across the muscle fiber, but move up and down the length.

Hope this helps.

...Tim
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Old 10-18-2011, 06:27 PM   #7
Tim Huntley
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Re: Trying To Understand Muscle Knots/Tightness/Injury and Recovery

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Originally Posted by Andrew Perlot View Post
Thanks for the article. Really informative.
You bet!
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