Soreness And Results

RekaReka ✭✭✭
edited September 2014 in Physical Performance

When we train, according to my understanding, we create micro tears in our muscles. This causes DOMS (and not lactic acid as we used to think). Then during rest and eating, the body rebuilds them stronger.


Recently I got some muscle soreness just by rolling and falling at a class. The soreness in my back and forearms was identical to DOMS after a workout. Does this type of micro injury cause the same reaction, does the body rebuild this tissue stronger than before? It makes sense to me, and the soreness feels the same, and similar things happen after a workout and an injury.


So practically: could we just give someone a light beating on some muscle groups and cause them muscle gains with that? What about strength gains? Does the injured tissue necessarily build itself back stronger than before? If not, how comes that the soreness is identical?


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  • i hope so cuz I heard that stress fractures heal stronger and I have had one too many and am getting beyond frustrated

  • SkeletorSkeletor The Conqueror Worm ✭✭✭
    edited September 2014

    So practically: could we just give someone a light beating on some muscle groups and cause them muscle gains with that?


    I can see it now...


    The video begins with Dave pacing around on camera, cracking his knuckles. There's a Louisville Slugger tucked away in his room, just barely in frame.


    "I've just discovered one of the BEST hacks since I invented Bulletproof Coffee," he begins, his multicolored T-shirt stained with flecks of dried blood. "You want to get big? You want to get juicy? Yeah? Well, I'm happy to announce the launch of a new program: Bulletproof Ass Kickings. For the low price of ten-thousand dollars, I, Dave Asprey, will kick your ass, Bulletproof-style. This results in a proprietary blend of microtears in key muscle groups, which will heal to add mass and strength."


    He walks over and picks up the Louisville Slugger, the logo hastily scratched away, and the Bulletproof logo drawn clumsily in its place in permanent marker. "This is a new product I'm launching, called the Bulletproof Muscle Stick. When a certified Bulletproof ass-kicker uses this exciting new product on you, you tend to feel it in your head, right between your eyes first. Trust me-- you're gonna feel it."

    "I know how to despise mere cool intelligence. What I want is intelligence matched by pure, physical existence, like a statue." --Yukio Mishima


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  • "I'm happy to announce the launch of a new program: Bulletproof Ass Kickings."



    Only the most masochistic would consider switching to Caveman Ass Kickings. 



    Reka, I'm not an expert, but a few thoughts...


    First, I will suggest that our internal pain/soreness response may not be accurate enough to determine that the similar feeling after a fall/roll and a workout is in fact the same thing going on internally. It is most certainly a feedback loop that says "don't do that thing you just did again, at least not until the pain goes away," but I'm not convinced that the same feeling = the same biological situation. As a kid I fractured both wrists in the same place, at different times, in the same summer. (I'm smarter now.) One was immediately wildly painful, and the other was so mild I was pretty convinced wasn't fractured until I got an X ray. The difference was probably a random slight difference in the position of my nerves relative to the breaks. 


    Second, a weight training workout is hopefully a very controlled process with clear goals and limits, while an injury is most certainly not. While many injuries do "heal stronger," that comes with costs: inflammation and potentially scar tissue. Further, since the weight training is controlled and predictable, so is the associated inflammation and DOMS. The injury might feel better tomorrow, or could take weeks to fully heal. If it heals with scar tissue, you might never be quite the same. In other words, yes training causes micro-tears, but injury might cause macro-tears. 


    Third, DOMS from weight training seems to be associated with eccentric (lowering/stretching) motions. This is tearing the muscle specifically along the axis on which it is evolved to do its work. A light beating all around will just disrupt cells in every direction, so while it theoretically could build resilience and perhaps even strength in every direction, it should be much more efficient to disrupt the muscle cells specifically in the most useful direction. Your bicep will never do anything besides bend your elbow, so why stress it in any other direction? I suppose if you don't care about strength, but only mass, at least some swelling from a light beating will make you look swole. 


    Careful with your back. I had a disc impinging on a nerve in my back from falling off a skimboard onto hard sand, and at first it felt like regular old DOMS. Days later, it was a pretty horrible stabbing pain that required physical therapy. 

  • Hello, new here though I've been in the fitness world awhile. I do not think that I've ever seen a study on it but, I do not think that injuring a muscle through any other means that exertion will cause it to experience any beneficial growth. You will induce scar tissue and scar tissue is not contractile tissue and would serve no purpose. It would not cause muscle hypertrophy. The micro trauma that straining a muscle causes sets forth a cascade of signals to the muscle cells. Telling them to replace the fibers with stronger and perhaps even more fibers, this is called Myofibrillar hypertrophy. The other way hypertrophy is induced is by causing sarcoplasmic hypertrophy, in which the muscle cell's capacity to store glycogen is increased and the muscle cells are larger due to the increased storage of glycogen. 


    The DOMs your refer too is most likely from the micro trauma. Stretching movements cause the most, So if you do a standard standing bicep curl, you are less likely to suffer micro trauma and therefore DOMS  than if you did dumbell bicep curls on and incline bench, where the bicep contracts from a totally stretched position. 


    I used to be a personal trainer. I once had a client complain that he was not sore enough after workouts....I intentionally avoided stretch position exercises for newbies as sometimes extreme soreness reduces the chance that they will lift regularl. This client wanted to be sore...the next workout we did exclusively stretch movements. The next session when he could barely move, he requested that we go back to our normal routine. LOL 


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