Explanation Muscle Sites


On this page I will explain you some points that will make it easier for you to understand all the sites that I have written about muscles, their function and the problems they can cause.


On this page I will explain you some points that will make it easier for you to understand all the sites that I have written about muscles, their function and the problems they can cause.


Pain Zones


These are the zones you might feel pain in, when the described muscle contains trigger points. More on trigger points in just a minute.


Attachment Points


Skeletal muscles move joints and thus your body. To do so it becomes obvious that in some way they have to be connected to your bones and thus your joints – in very easy language, a joint is formed by two or more bones connecting –.


At its beginning and end a muscle has a tendon. Those tendons are attached to bones and thus form
the attachment points of the muscles.



Note: This is a simplification, but as this website is designed for practical application and not for 100% scientific correctness, I will leave it with that.


Function


Muscles have functions. Although many people do not know, they serve for more than “just” moving your body. But here I will concentrate on/describe the movements that muscles do.


Overuse And Trigger Point Development


Overuse of a muscle may lead to tightness, tender and trigger point development.


But first of all. What are tender and trigger points? Spoken easy, a trigger point is a point that, if pressed on, is locally painful and sends pain to areas different from the one pressed on.


Tender points are just painful when you press on them. But they do not send pain to any other areas of the body.


On muscles there should be no tender or trigger points. If you are healthy – no cold, flue or other more dramatic diseases like cancer – and find painful areas on a muscle, you know that it needs some work and your attention.


But please keep one thing in mind. I am talking here only about skeletal muscle tissue! If you miss a muscle and hit a nerve or other sensitive areas, it will hurt and in this case that is normal. So it is important to be able to locate muscles properly if you work them. With some practice you will find that it is really not such a big deal.


Just try to be patient with yourself while learning. Do not rush and do not expect to be super good and accurate with massage after just a couple of sessions. There are no shortcuts. Just massage and learn. But do it smart. You will have fun with it.




Now back to the overuse issue. When a muscle gets overused/badly used over a long period of time, or if it experiences an acute heavy trauma, it is prone to give you pain in some part of your body.


Overuse can occur acutely or chronically.


Acute overuse mostly takes place during unexpected movements which occur when you slip, fall or have an accident. So generally, acute overuse is mostly induced by acute traumas. A certain part of the body gets unexpectedly and heavily overloaded. As a matter of that, the corresponding muscles get strained and might develop tender or trigger points or just get tight.


Also heavy impacts on a muscle – e.g. a punch on your shoulder – can induce trigger points.


Chronic overuse is the type of stress that you put on your body and certain muscles chronically or in a repetitive manner - consciously or unconsciously –. Such things may happen with…


  • Muscle training
  • Abnormal postures
  • Abnormal movement patterns – e.g. limping – 



Note: The term overuse is relative. That means, stress that might be too much for my muscles may be no stress at all for your muscles and vice versa. Among others it is dependent on your diet, emotions and training status.


Impaired Or Painful Movements


When you move your body and your joint, certain muscles have to contract while others have to elongate. Otherwise movements would not take place. Here is an example: When you bend your Elbow, the muscles that bend it - biceps brachii, brachialis, … , – will contract while the ones that extend it will -  triceps, … - will elongate.


When a muscle is very tight or contains trigger or tender points, it can be painful to use it. So it might be painful when you contract or stretch/elongate it. Using a muscle with tender or trigger points can be painful as soon as you put tension on it.



You contract it and it gives you pain because you increase tension. You elongate it - while doing the opposite movement that the muscles initiates – and it may give you pain because it wants to stay in its tight position.


Why? Because with tightness, tender or trigger points, muscles are usually in a shortened and tight position. And they want to stay there. If you now want to elongate the muscle – which includes a slight stretch – tension will increase even more and thus the muscle may give you pain.


Palpation


In this section I will describe how to locate the particular muscle. This is important as you only can treat a muscle if you know where it is located or if you are able to sense it.You cannot sense every muscle in your body with your hands. Luckily this is even not the most important thing. What is important though, is that you know where the muscles run, so you can place massage equipment on the right spots.


Self-Massage


Here I will describe how to massage the presented muscle. You will find brief but precise and written instructions. Besides that, there will be pictures and a video to help you along the way. Massaging is a powerful tool to get rid of tender and trigger points. Once they are gone, use proper stretching,relaxation, mobility and strength exercises to keep them away.

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