Sat, 19 Sep, 2020, 10:55
Being a coach of Rhythmic Gymnastics with more than 20 years of international experience, very often I come across a question from many parents about muscles pain.
Parents of the gymnasts often complaint about the fact that muscles pain deprives their child of pleasure at the training or sometimes young gymnasts even refuse to attend the classes. Many parents just simply don’t know what do, and what to say and how to release the pain of their beloved children who’s undergo a hard training. I saw many parents giving them Panadol without taking any advice from coach and finding it as a best solution for nagging child to release the muscles pain.
I would like to shed a more light for this issue what we call a Muscle Pain.
It is well known that Rhythmic Gymnastics is a sport for very young girls and teens. At the age of 20-22 most of the gymnasts already retired, sometimes even earlier. That’s why rhythmic gymnasts should train more hours compare to other athletes in different kind of sport.
When a workout is too intense the muscle might don’t have enough oxygen to supply energy and muscles acidification can occur. Then your muscles start to accumulate a product of energy exchange – lactic acid. It gradually forms salt
(lactate), which causes a burning sensation in the muscles. It can start right after your workout and last for several hours. And it’s an absolutely normal process! Moreover, it’s a good sign that means you are really having muscles!!!
Muscles pain can appear, but it is possible to ease it. Strong anti-inflammatory ointments are only needed for real injuries. Panadol can release muscles pain for a while, but it cannot remove the cause of pain. It gives impulse to our brain. Then our brain starts to block the muscles pain, when in fact it doesn’t disappear by itself.
So, Panadol give us a fake feeling that muscles pain is gone, when in reality it is still present. So, what to do?
I would like to give some recommendations how to ease muscles pain:
- Cold. Apply cold compresses or apply dry ice to damaged area. This will relieve muscles pain after exercise.
- Warm. If the pain persists for more than a day, then you need to take a hot bath with sea salt: blood vessels will expand, blood flow will increase, which means the healing process is stimulated.
- Massage. Such manipulations will have a beneficial effect on the muscles. It will increase blood flow to them and speed up recovery.
- Sleep. This is the best solution for all problems. The muscles recovery process will proceed much faster while you sleep. Therefore, during the training process you need to sleep at least 8-9 hours per day.
- Water. Be sure to follow your drinking regime. You need to drink water during and after training. The more you sweat, the more you should drink to replenish your fluid and electrolyte balance.
And of course, it’s very important not to miss next training that will help to prevent muscles pain by fighting fire with fire. Stretching can give a great effect. Also parents should explain this to your child and say, that any beautiful performance whether it is sport, dance or ballet, or rhythmic gymnastics, requires hard work, tension, fatigue. And I think the issue of whether to force the child to train or not will then just disappear.
Olga Strizhakova Bassil
Head coach of RG of Stade Nouhad Naufal
Certified Judge and Coach of RG from Lebanese Gymnastics Federation
Holder of Master degree in Physical Training and Sport of High Achievements