Published: 10/13/2009 - Updated: 08/14/2019
There are many injuries that we suffer in the gym or playing sports. Muscle tears are one of the most common problems. That's why we'll explain what they are, how we should deal with them and, above all, avoidance.
Muscle tears are tears of the muscle tissue, more or less extensive because gravity depends on the affected area. These can occur in any muscle in the body.
How do I realize that this is a tear?
When you have a tear, you feel a sudden pain, sharp and intense, like a knife-located in a very specific point. From the moment it occurs is very painful, and almost impossible to make any motion with that muscle.
In cases of mild tears, pain is the only sign. In more serious cases such as a whole muscle tear, hematoma also occurs due to internal bleeding. If pain is severe you may receive a component of shock, dizziness and cold sweats, but this is less common.
Why are they made?
As for the causes of tears, there are direct and indirect causes.
The general causes are violent muscle contractions or sudden and jerky spurts. It can also occur when it is subjected to an excessive burden when you are tired or not warm enough. The muscles that have suffered recent injuries of any kind, are not yet completely healed, also have a good chance of suffering a fracture. External causes such as falls or drops can also cause this injury.
Sweating causes loss of fluids and salts in the body. The muscles lose elasticity they lose moisture, so that after prolonged exercise increases the chance of tear.
What should I do?
- Apply ice to the painful area: sometimes you cannot have ice in the gym, but the best is to cool the wound (towels soaked in cold water, a soda vending machine). This will reduce inflammation and reduce or stop the bleeding if it exists. It must be kept cold for 10 or 15 minutes.
- If it is a leg muscle, for example, put a pressure bandage around the thigh to the groin. All gyms should have a first aid kit, elastic bandages and more. After 20 minutes remove the bandage, allow to rest 5 minutes and put back.
- Do not apply heat. This increases the bleeding.
In mild spurt that is enough. And, of course, wait for at least a week before resuming training. We need not rush to train the next day, the idea is not having problems and that avoid the proper healing rest.
More serious cases are easy to identify: the injured person cannot walk, and pain is reduced only after using the ice and bandages. In this case you should immediately call a doctor, trying not to move or touch the painful area.
Anyway it is always best to consult an orthopedic doctor.
Can we prevent these injuries?
Let us be clear that the times when most injuries are occurring are at the beginning and end of lessons or training. At first, because the muscle has not yet warmed up. In the end, because they have influence of the fatigue and dehydration.
That's why you should always warm up and stretch thoroughly before commencing training.
Avoid any injury in the gym
Push-ups: The famous push-ups can become harmful if you make them with your hands too far apart. Best place your palms to shoulder height. If your wrists bother you, do push-ups on the dumbbells.
Stilts: In stilts, we usually make the mistake of moving too far forward trunk. To correct this imagine, your spine must remain upright, head in line with your hips. Look straight ahead instead of down, step forward and lower until front thigh is parallel to the ground.
Abdominal: When you do crunches, is a common mistake of throwing your arms forward and head up. A good trick is to press the tongue to the roof of the mouth, because the tongue is attached to the neck flexors and so it is harder to implication in the motion.
Lumbar extensions: In some cases we put the back and head further back than recommended, and that could mean future trouble and lower back injuries. It is very important that you do not exceed lumbar exercises with the trunk line and your legs straight, unless your sport is rhythmic and artistic gymnastics.
Squat: It is not uncommon to make the mistake of moving the knee laterally either inward or outward, when we flex to do a squat. To avoid the gaze directed toward your knees and look at that match visually with your foot, between the thumb and little finger, with the weight on your heels.