The Health Guru

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Post-Paddle Soreness…. Ouch!

Posted on | January 19, 2010 | No Comments

I went a little crazy on the weekend… … after relaxing for 6 weeks over xmas / NY I decided to begin my paddling training with 4 sessions in one weekend.

I knew I was going to be in a world of pain after the 3rd session on Saturday when I was aching just standing still.  That night, I’ll confess I had to actually take painkillers to get some sleep because I kept rolling over (or trying to) and waking myself up.  And then, backed it up with another paddle Sunday afternoon.

I’m hoping this is just the initial adaptation soreness which is normal any time your muscles resume working vigorously again – because if it isn’t – I have a lot of paddling planned between now and July that’s going to make Monday and Tuesdays tough.

Which leads me to the question – What is the best way to avoid muscle soreness? (in the industry we refer to it as DOMS – Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness)

DOMS Treatment:

  • Try RICE – Rest, Ice, Compression, Elevation
  • Have a cold / ice bath
  • Active Recovery:  It’s been proven if you perform some easy low-impact aerobic exercise to increase blood flow it helps diminish muscle soreness.
  • Stretch Gently:  Did you know that stretching actually doesn’t help to reduce DOMS.  I think it’s all just psychological.
  • Gentle massage helps
  • Use anti-inflammatory medication if it’s really bad – aspirin or ibuprofen (this only reduces soreness)
  • Avoid vigorous activity again until the pain reduces

DOMS Prevention:

The main thing is warm up and cool down properly.  Stretch afterwards. Ease into any changes to normal exercise habits.

Like they say – prevention is always better than cure.

I must admit – I didn’t stretch enough on the weekend and I started out too hard.  But I can’t turn back time – so must learn from my mistakes.  And… to make things worse – I didn’t reach far enough with my sunscreen and have a lovely bright red and very sore outline of the top I was wearing :-(

Ok, back to icing my back muscles and sunburn.

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