How To Relieve Muscle Knots And Cramping

By Max. D Gray. Updated: January 16, 2017
How To Relieve Muscle Knots And Cramping

You will very likely suffer from knotted muscle pain at some point in your life. Muscles work best when they are well fed with the right amount of nutrients and hydration and when used properly, without subjecting them to too much strain. Unfortunately, no matter how much you care for yourself and your muscles, there is no escaping the occasional sharp pain of contracted muscles. Here are some tips for removing muscle knots and cramping. Muscles can spontaneously cramp during sleep or suddenly when you are trying to reach something on a high shelf in the supermarket. You might just be taking a shower and sharply turn your neck to rinse your hair --- sometimes muscle knots seem to occur with little provocation. Fortunately, there are some things you can do to learn how to relieve muscle knots.

You'll need:
  • heat pad
  • nonsteroidial anti-inflammatory drugs or muscle relaxants
  • massage pillow or hand massage device (or masseuse)
  • muscle pain cream (optional)
  • microwavable gel pack
You may also be interested in: How Long Does A Trapezius Muscle Strain Last
Steps to follow:

Apply heat to the affected muscle

If the muscle pain is really just a knot, a muscular pain rather than an injury , heat will help to relax the muscle so that it can loosen and release the knot. If you think the knot is due to an injury, apply an ice pack and see a doctor. Electric heating pads, hot gel packs and disposable heat pads work well for muscle knots. Learn how to make a hot compress for muscle pain here.

How To Relieve Muscle Knots And Cramping - Step 1

Massage the affected area

If you know a good masseuse, visit them for a massage as soon as possible. If you don't have a masseuse or cannot afford to visit one, there are other ways to massage the muscle. If the knot is in the leg, you can easily massage it yourself.

Unfortunately, many muscle knots occur in the neck and shoulder and are not as accessible. To relieve these muscle cramps and knots, you can stand under a hot shower and let the water fall on you for a long time. After the shower, use a massage pillow or a portable handheld device on the knotted muscle.

How To Relieve Muscle Knots And Cramping - Step 2

Stretch the muscle slowly

Stretching properly can help prevent the muscles surrounding the knotted muscle to become contracted as well. It will also help reduce the tension in the cramped muscle and slowly ease the knot. If you practice a sport or regularly exercise, it's very important to stretch the muscles you are going to use properly.

How To Relieve Muscle Knots And Cramping - Step 3

Activities to stretch and slowly elongate:

It is recommendable to practice yoga, Tai chi, Taekwondo or any form of martial art, as these are great activities for relaxation, as well as good stretching and physical activities, which are key points to daily well-being. If you do these activities, you'll see amazing changes on a short term and you'll be able to increase your lifestyle quality.

How To Relieve Muscle Knots And Cramping - Step 4


In some cases, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs or muscle relaxants can be useful such as ibuprofen or muscle relaxants, but they should also be prescribed.

Apply a topical cream for muscle pain. Most topical creams for muscle pain only give temporary relief, however, they can be very beneficial before a massage. Topical creams help relax the muscles and facilitate a deeper and more beneficial massage.

How To Relieve Muscle Knots And Cramping - Step 5

This article is merely informative, oneHOWTO does not have the authority to prescribe any medical treatments or create a diagnosis. We invite you to visit your doctor if you have any type of condition or pain.

If you want to read similar articles to How To Relieve Muscle Knots And Cramping, we recommend you visit our Diseases & secondary effects category.

  • Keep as mobile as possible. If you don't move around, it will take longer to relieve the muscle knot. Movement will help loosen muscle fibres t
  • If the pain persists or you think the knot arose from an injury, you should consult your doctor for recommendations.
  • If there is significant swelling near the knot, consult a doctor before applying heat. Ice may be more appropriate in some cases.
  • Do not burn your skin.
  • Follow the instructions if using a heat pad and don't use it for longer than recommended.
  • Never sleep with a heat pad on.
  • Do not try to drive after taking a muscle relaxant.
  • If you use a topical cream, follow the instructions. Some creams are not designed to be used with a heat pad.
  • Some muscle pain creams contain an ingredient similar to aspirin. Do not take aspirin or other anti-inflammatory drugs while using such creams for pain - if you do, you risk an overdose.
  • frequent or persistent muscle knots in the same area may be a sign of an underlying problem.

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