""Tight muscles" almost always get the blame for why you are having pain or discomfort with certain movements.
Usually you get the temporary relief you need, but it just doesn't always do the trick, nor does it last as long as you would like it to.
This is because the muscles are behaving in a manner that they are biased towards.
Joint positions change the bias of how muscles will have leverage and pull in the body. If you can't get into a certain position, your body will compensate around that, and use other muscles to inefficiently achieve the movement.
These muscles gain a preferential bias to pull, and since they may be biting off more than they can chew, increase strain and pain ensues.
This is explains why the relief is temporary and why the same muscles tend to always strain.
The best way to change the "tight" feeling is to change the bias of joint position.
We all have one, and understanding where you struggle gives you insight on where you need to balance out your training and movement patterns.
As an example, you may always get tightness in the traps or upper back near the neck.
This is due to the scapula (shoulder blade) being placed in a "hiked up" position as well as being tipped forward. Next you have inefficiency in shoulder movements, so the neck takes over to make up for lost abilities.
If you can change the position of the scapula and how it behaves in space (increasing air volume in the chest in this example) you will take away the ability AND need for the neck to take over.
STOP chasing muscles as the problem and START chasing joint positions so you don't have to keep struggling with the same problem over and over again.
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Dr. Peter Dionisopoulos is the owner and founder of Dynamic Performance & Rehab. He has worked with many high-level athletes and military personnel, but his true passion is to help active adults maintain their lifestyle by providing information and potential solutions to their aches and pains so they can continue with the activities they love.