Ouch! You’ve pulled a muscle. Now what?
Pulled (or strained) muscles are among the most common sports injuries. Just about everyone has pulled a muscle at some point in their lives.
According to healthline.com, a pulled muscle “occurs when your muscle is overstretched or torn.” This can happen in any number of ways, such as from overexertion or improper stretching.
A pulled muscle can often take weeks or even months to fully repair itself. Check out these simple treatments to get you back on your feet.
One of the most common muscle groups to watch out for are your knee muscles. Whether you’re playing a sport like soccer, or simply jogging, pulling a muscle in the knee is very common.
Fortunately, recovery is quite simple when performed correctly.
When it comes to the knees, one of the simplest ways to recover from a pulled muscle is through the use of a vibration plate. Vibration plates release a series of soothing vibrations throughout the body that aid in recovery.
There are many different exercises and stretches that you can do to rehabilitate your knees and aid recovery with a vibration plate.
From pushups and squats to lunges and calf raises, there are many different exercises you can do to accelerate the recovery of a pulled muscle. To get the most out of a vibration plate, try out these Vibration Plate exercises for knee rehabilitation. They don’t relieve tension in just your knees – but all around your body!
Aside from vibration therapy, one of the most well-known methods to treating sports injuries (including pulled muscles) is called the R.I.C.E. Method.
This stands for: Rest, Ice, Compress, and Elevate. By following these simple steps, you will be well on your way to recovery after pulling a muscle.
It’s no big secret that rest is a critical ingredient for recovering from not just pulled muscles but from any injury. After pulling a muscle, it’s important to give the muscle time to do what it naturally does best: repairing itself. It’s not a long process. For an average muscle strain, expect to rest the muscle for roughly 2 days. Severe muscle strains, however, will require more time to rest and recover. While resting pulled muscles, it’s critical to avoid overexerting the muscle. It’s best to avoid strenuous exercise, and above all, avoid putting pressure on the strained muscle until it has recovered.
Of course, rest isn’t the ONLY thing that helps a pulled muscle. When you pull a muscle, one of the first things you should do is grab some ice and immediately apply it on top of the pulled muscle. This has consistently been found to reduce swelling and inflammation, as well as accelerating the recovery process.
The third step in the R.I.C.E. method is compression. Applying gentle pressure on the muscle has been found to reduce both muscle swelling and inflammation. Typically, this means wrapping the area with an elastic bandage. By doing this, swelling of the injury gradually begins to disappear.
You can also supplement use of an elastic bandage with a compression sleeve, such as Lifepro’s Thrive Series. Compression sleeves make it easy to improve circulation to the injury. Simply slide your leg into the sleeve, choose your massage settings, and you’re off! (Note: compression sleeves are not a substitute for wrapping the area in an elastic bandage.)
The more blood that flows to an injury, the more severe inflammation and swelling become. In order to prevent this, it is critical to elevate the injury. One of the easiest ways to do this is by propping your feet up on pillows or other elevated surfaces. Generally speaking, the higher the angle (up to a certain point), the more effective this will be.
Broken arms, for instance, take longer to recover and still require that the injury be elevated. This is why casts are so important (especially for upper-body injuries!). They aren’t just something you wear to help with broken bones. They keep the injury elevated!
In fact, a 2006 study found a significant correlation in treatment outcomes for a group of patients when comparing recovery both before and after elevation. The conclusion? An elevation of 60 degrees showed a significant decrease in swelling compared to an elevation of 20 degrees. 20 degrees, in turn, also showed a steep decrease in swelling compared to no elevation. Simply put: recovery takes longer when the muscle is not elevated.
Pulled muscles (or muscle strains) are no fun. However, recovering from a pulled muscle doesn’t need to be like pulling teeth. It can be a simple, stress-free process. By following the RICE method (Rest, Ice, Compress, Elevate), anybody can recover from a pulled muscle with ease.
Just follow those four simple steps. Before you know it, the pulled muscle will be nothing but a distant memory.
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