Unlocking the Mystery of Pain in Your Training: Discover the Hidden Factors Holding You Back

Unlocking the Mystery of Pain in Your Training: Discover the Hidden Factors Holding You Back

What is Pain?

Our body responds to 3 major stimuli: thermal, chemical, and mechanical. During training, our body is under constant mechanical pressure, and mechanical nociceptors converts it into electrical energy through the nerve system. Once the magnitude of this electrical energy reaches a threshold, a signal is sent to your brain, which leads to a painful sensation. This mechanism is an important part of our basic survival instinct, in order to protect ourselves from potential harm & injury.

Photo by Victor Freitas / Unsplash

Pain caused by Inflammation or Misalignment?

Inflammatory conditions such as Arthritis, Lateral epicondylitis, Adhesive Capsulitis all end with the same suffix, which is"-itis". This suffix denotes the condition of inflammation. Most inflammatory conditions share common signs, which are heat, redness, swelling & loss of function. Inflammation happens when your body's immune system is activated to fight infections.
Yet Pain is merely a symptom of inflammation, not always a sign of it. So when you experience pain but without any common signs of inflammation mentioned above, then it is most likely not caused by inflammatory conditions. And more importantly, if you only feel pain when moving your body outside of a limited range of motion, then inflammation might not be the culprit, hence it should not be treated as such. In many cases, this type of pain is the result of misalignment of your body.

Misalignment: Muscle & Body Structure

When you stretch your muscles to their limit, your body will naturally feel pain. And that pain is a warning signal to stop you from hurting yourself.
But the more important question we should be asking is how are we stretching our muscles out of its limit during physical exercise/training or even during simple daily tasks? The key to that answer is muscle overuse.
Repetative movements will lead to muscle overuse in certain areas of the body. And consequently, overuse of the muscle leads to muscle cohesion, which causes the muscle group to lose its full range of motion as well as its ability to function properly.
Your body is very good at adapting in order to compensate for new & different movement patterns. When you overuse a certain muscle group, it becomes contracted & contorted, loses its full range of motion. Therefore, the antagonist muscular group has to be lengthened & stretched to compensate for this new movement pattern. This is a typical result of muscle cohesion. The new compensated movement pattern will instead take over, and your body forgets how it was supposed to move. Through daily use & regular training, your muscles & body structure will gradually become misaligned, which leads to limited range of motion, pain & discomfort.

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