Everyone has heard the term DOMS being tossed around in the gym but what exactly is it, what does that mean to you and how do you recover from it?
DOMS stands for delayed onset muscle soreness. This means that after a strenuous exercise, the body may experience pain or stiffness that doesn’t usually start until hours or even days after the workout. This usually occurs when a muscle group hasn’t been worked out in several days and then an intense workout is completed or when new exercises are introduced in the individual’s training program. One of the most commonly encountered factors associated with DOMS is the buildup of lactic acid in the muscle tissues. However, DOMS can also be caused by muscle cramping, micro trauma to the muscle, inflammation as well as many other factors. Many timesathletes that are struggling with DOMS can be seen limping around the gym or taking several days off from training, but what can you do to speed up the recovery process and get back to the gym for training?
Research has been done on many different modalities to find the best solution for someone suffering from DOMS. Cryotherapy (ice baths), massage/soft tissue work, stretching/foam-rolling, heat modalities (sauna, heat packs), compression modalities (normatec), and electrical stimulation are all good resources to help lessen the severity of the effects of DOMS. Making sure to incorporate these items several times a week into your training will ultimately lead to better results.