Coping with Sore Muscles after Yoga
Written by Dr. Minakshi Welukar.
Feeling achy after a yoga session is common, especially if you are a beginner or resume yoga after long breaks. One of the major problems with muscle soreness is the difficultly to stay on tract with a regular fitness regimen. However, with some preparation before starting a new yoga session coping with muscle soreness can be easy.
Muscle Soreness after Yoga
Feeling great after asanas but experiencing body aches the next day is not rare with yoga. Though yoga is a low-impact exercise, having sore muscles is quite common as muscles are going through physical stress, especially for those who are just starting a yoga practice. Muscle soreness is always an uncomfortable feeling and may distract you from your next workout.
As a newbie you are pushing your body a little harder than usual. You are using muscles for poses that are not adapted yet and hence get strained. Such damaged muscles require time to recover and get adapted for peculiar poses. Repeated muscular contraction and relaxation can cause microscopic tears in muscle fiber and build-up of chemicals. Chemicals irritate pain receptors leading to pain and discomfort. Damaged muscles get easily inflamed resulting in soreness of muscles. However, these issues disappear after some time with building of muscle strength and endurance.
Most muscle soreness after yoga can recover with home remedies and doesn’t require medical attention. Here are a few handy tips that can help overcome muscle soreness:
Gently Massage Sore Muscles with Oil
Massage is a wonderful ancient technique used to relax muscles and sooth the pain. Massage relieves tension built up in muscles and helps to lessen the pain and make it go away quicker.
Hot baths or steam can work great to take away pains from your body. Heat reduces muscle stiffness, making them more relaxed and decreases pain. Heat increases blood flow to affected area and takes away accumulated toxins, which hasten the healing process.
Adding some Epsom salt to your bath water doubles the health benefits of hot fomentation. Epsom salt relaxes the nervous system, reducing muscle strain and draws toxins from the body.
Pain medication eases pain and relieves inflammation. Never hesitate to take over-the-counter pain medication if you are not feeling relieved with natural home remedies like massage or hot baths.
If your muscle soreness doesn’t respond to above-mentioned remedies consult your doctor to find out if you have any deep muscular injury.
Preventing Muscle Soreness
Prepare yourself before each yoga session to reduce possible muscle soreness.
Warm up before a Session
Stretch up major muscle groups before starting your yoga practice. This increases blood flow to these muscles and helps to adapt your muscles to hold each pose for a specific time without much strain or discomfort.
Eating Potassium Rich Foods after Workout
Potassium, a mineral, is needed for healthy muscular function. Potassium is needed for proper muscle contractions. Eating potassium enriched foods such as bananas, legumes, tomatoes, broccoli, avocados and coconut water can reduce chances of muscle spasm.
Follow-up a Good Workout Plan
Although yoga is scientifically proven to be amazing for you, it doesn’t mean you should overdo it. Discuss your workout plan with your trainer and follow it properly. Start gradually with gentle stretching poses and move towards extensive stretching ones. Avoid any vigorous activity that can increase the chances of muscle cramps.
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