Overview of Muscle Soreness
Post-exercise muscle soreness, also known as delayed-onset muscle soreness (DOMS), is defined as the sensation of discomfort or pain in the skeletal muscles following physical activity, usually eccentric, to which an individual is not accustomed.
For some individuals, sore muscles are a reward after a hard workout. In fact, some people aren’t happy unless they’re sore after their workout, while others could live without it. Either way, all of us have probably experienced muscle soreness at one time or another.
Muscle soreness is a side effect of the stress put on muscles when you exercise. It is commonly called Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness, or DOMS, and it is completely normal. DOMS usually begins within 6-8 hours after a new activity or a change in activity, and can last up to 24-48 hours after the exercise.
Post-Exercise, Delayed-Onset Muscle Soreness
The biology & treatment of “muscle fever,” the deep muscle soreness that surges 24-48 hours after an unfamiliar workout intensity
When muscles are required to work harder than they’re used to or in a different way, it’s believed to cause microscopic damage to the muscle fibres, resulting in muscle soreness or stiffness. DOMS is often mistakenly believed to be caused by a build up of lactic acid, but lactic acid isn’t involved in this process.
Delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS) happens 1 -2 days after exercise. The most likely cause of DOMS is microscopic muscle tears or a breakdown in muscle tissue that occurs during a workout. Introducing new activities or suddenly increasing the intensity can cause DOMS to occur.
Any physical activity that places too much or unusual strain on the muscles can lead to soreness. Everyone can experience muscle soreness, even people who exercise regularly and have good physical fitness.
Muscle soreness can be uncomfortable and disruptive. However, the pain typically disappears within a few days.
The incidence of DOMS is difficult to calculate, because most people who experience it do not seek medical attention, instead accepting DOMS as a temporary discomfort. Every healthy adult most likely has developed DOMS on countless occasions, with the condition occurring regardless of the person’s general fitness level.
How does red light therapy repair muscle soreness
Light therapy utilizes biology to help you recover. Essentially, red light therapy helps the mitochondria in muscular cells complete their respiration cycle more efficiently, which makes the muscles less likely to suffer fatigue. Light therapy also works to reduce inflammation that damages cells and makes muscles sore.
Red light therapy has been credited with treating acne, scars and SAD (seasonal affective disorder). But now is more than a beauty regimen or mood booster; it can also help speed up muscle recovery and enhance athletic performance.
The exact red light therapy process is quite complex. In a nutshell, red light helps promote the production of antioxidants, which play a big role in reducing oxidative stress associated with muscle fatigue. Antioxidants also increase the production of heat proteins, which help repair and build muscle. Red light therapy can also reduce inflammation and prevent cell damage.
“Red Light Therapy (RLT) or Low-Level Laser Therapy (LLLT) has the potential to promote tissue healing and decrease pain,” explains Frank Hoeffner, a physical therapist at Professional Physical Therapy. “There is some evidence that shows RLT and LLLT have some promising results, helping athletes and patients heal and recover more quickly.”
Red light therapy stimulates collagen production and can help with the rebuilding of cartilage. It’s also been shown to reduce pain associated with sore muscles and injuries. Natural Pain Relief Benefits of Red Light Therapy Studies have shown that red light therapy treatments can ease chronic pain like back pain, muscle pain, and knee and joint pain, and improve healing outcomes after injuries and surgeries, without pain medication or other OTC remedies.
Infrared LED light therapy reaches deep into the skin to stimulate cell reproduction and healing providing relief of minor muscle and joint pain and stiffness, minor arthritis pain, and muscle spasms. Prevent the formation of melanin pigment Firming your skin Smooth pocks and lighten scars and dermatitis.
In general, best results are achieved over an 8 – 12 week period. It is recommended to start with a commitment of 15 minutes, which is the maximum time in our Red Light Therapy bed, at least 3-5 times per week for the first 1-4 weeks.
Red light therapy has several clinically proven abilities, including the following:
Repairing sun damage
Diminishing wrinkles, scars and stretch marks
Repairing and rebuilding muscle
Fast-tracking wound healing
How Can We Use Red Light Therapy?
In the past, you would have to go to a fancy salon or a dermatology medical center to get red light treatment. Moreover, red light therapy was mostly used for skin and acne treatments. But with recent technological advancements and research about how this light-based therapy can help repair muscles, the new product Aiosio LED has made it easy for anyone to practice red light therapy from the comfort of their own homes.
Aiosio LED Therapy Light Product is three inches thick and is designed to hang on the back of a door. It uses the latest LED technology, lasts about 50,000 hours and delivers 660nm of light, which is quickly absorbed through the outer layer of the skin. It comes in three different consumer options: mini, original and max. What’s more, RedDot LED products are not expensive, and RedDot LED’s sleek, easy-to-use design allows professional athletes and weekend warriors to do post-workout recovery at home instead of spending time and money on massages and light treatment at sports and medical facilities.
While it is natural and drug-free, red light therapy is not the whole answer to recovery. If you use red light therapy in conjunction with stretching, you can reap the benefits of both practices. This type of therapy can help athletes prevent muscle fatigue or soreness and can speed up recovery so pain doesn’t interfere with training or competitive performance.
Red light therapy has the potential to improve tissue healing and reduce pain in athletes and patients. It is not a treatment I would recommend in isolation; rather, it should be part of a comprehensive physical therapy program, to address underlying impairments that led to the injury.
Clinical research shows that red light therapy can repair muscle soreness
Light Therapy Fuels Your Muscle Tissue
We all know we need sunlight to stay healthy. Plenty of studies have underscored the role of sunlight in the production of vitamin D, and even back in the first century A.D., Roman scholar and naturalist Pliny the Elder extolled sunlight as “the greatest remedy.” But despite the sun’s longtime reputation as a natural healer, it’s taken us thousands of years to figure out how the sun promotes healing responses in the body – particularly in the muscles. It all starts deep in the cells where tiny structures called mitochondria take in nutrients, process them, and convert them to an energy source that the cells can use to function and repair themselves. Different types of cells have different energy requirements, and that means they contain different numbers of mitochondria. In the case of muscle tissue, which has high energy demands, mitochondria abound. In fact, it’s those high levels of mitochondria inside the muscle tissue that makes red and NIR light therapy so effective in promoting muscle health.
Red and Near Infrared Light Prevent Muscle Fatigue
One of the primary ways light therapy helps promote better muscle health and function is by preventing or limiting muscle fatigue, which naturally occurs as a result of physical activity – especially strenuous exercise and training. In fact, research shows red and infrared light therapy is effective in preventing muscle fatigue and enhancing skeletal muscle performance.
So how does light therapy reduce muscle fatigue and repair cells? At the most basic level, red and NIR light therapy improve the mitochondria respiration cycle and help mitochondria produce energy more efficiently – and that means muscles are less likely to suffer from fatigue. That’s it in a nutshell, but of course, the physiologic mechanisms behind all these benefits is a lot more complex. For instance, application of red and near infrared light helps promote production of antioxidants which play a central role in reducing oxidative stress associated with muscle fatigue. And they also increase the production of heat proteins – special proteins that help protect cells from stress and early cell death (apoptosis). Plus, light therapy helps reduce inflammation that can lead to cell damage. Some studies have shown an increase in microcirculation following light therapy, indicating tissues are more able to receive oxygen and other nutrients important for tissue healing – in addition to ridding themselves of toxic byproducts.
Light Therapy Enhances Muscle Growth
Muscle function and repair are important for improving strength and endurance and reducing fatigue and soreness following workouts and physical activity. But the benefits of red and NIR light therapy don’t stop there. Research shows application of light therapy also promotes the growth of healthy muscle tissue, or muscle hypertrophy, naturally increasing muscle size and bulk – as well as strength. In fact, one study comparing muscle growth and strength between two groups of athletes – one using light therapy combined with exercise and one using exercise alone – found muscle thickness and strength were significantly improved in those who used light therapy, and results were clearly measurable using ultrasound imaging and isokinetic dynamometry.