Remember how you felt after an extra-hard leg workout or a night out in stilettos? You’ve likely woken up with sore calf muscles. While sore calves due to the reasons like these are understandable, what about those days when you feel chronic tightness in your calves for no reason? According to a majority of the sports podiatrists in Mandurah, sometimes even doing a few simple stretches or massage therapies do not provide relief to sore calves. But many of you might be thinking, what sore calves are exactly and how to get relief. Don’t worry! We’ll discuss it all in this blog.
What Are Sore Calves?
A sore calf, also called muscle strain, is a common problem affecting your calf muscles. When you experience calf pain for a prolonged period of time, especially after intense activities like running, weightlifting or jumping, it indicates a serious condition. Delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS) is the most common cause of sore calves. If there is injury or pressure on the sciatic nerve of your calf, you may experience sharp pain or numbness while sitting down, coughing or sneezing and you must visit a podiatry clinic straightaway.
Numbness Muscle spasms Swelling Varicose veins Sleep disturbances Inability to walk or put your weight on your leg Pain after mild walking or exercise that doesn’t go away
Various causes are responsible for suffering from sore calves. These are:
- DOMS: As said earlier, DOMS (Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness) is one of the most common causes of sore calves. If you have calve pain 24 to 72 hours after exercising, you are suffering from sore calves. You may feel your calf muscle to be cramped and the pain will just refuse to go away on its own. However, DOMS reduces gradually when the calf muscles get adapted to the added stress. If not, you will have to take a podiatrist’s help before it gets worse.
- Muscle cramps: Muscle cramps can happen anytime without a reason. You may feel your calf muscles to be very tight and hard and have a needling sensation due to the cramps.
- Calf muscle strain: This usually happens if you have overstretched during exercising. Soleus and gastronemius are the two muscles that comprise the calves at the back of your leg. During rigorous physical activities, these muscles suffer from extensive wear and tear that result in pain and inflammation. If you have pain right in the middle of your calf belly, it is calf muscle strain that needs medical treatment.
- Other causes are: Contrusion Deep vein thrombosis Tendinitis Peripheral artery disease Neuropathy Restless leg syndrome
Effective Ways to Relieve Sore Calves
- Massage & myofascial release: If you are experiencing sore calves post workout sessions, opting for a massage therapy from a certified professional can be a wise decision. You can also use a foam roller to roll out your calves and have some myofascial release. This enables you to recover quickly while easing the tension in muscle tissue.
- Ice: Rubbing ice on your calves helps to reduce inflammation. Just take out some ice from the freezer, wrap it in a towel and move it all over your calf muscle.
- Sports podiatry: Extreme cases of sore calves are effectively treated when you visit sports podiatrists in Mandurah. The podiatrist will first assess the movement of your feet and check if there is any inappropriate alignment of your body’s joints. After assessing your feet’s condition, the podiatrist may recommend any of the following treatments like: Orthotics & footwear, Shockwave therapy, Postural correction, Supportive strapping and offloading.
- Sports massage: A session of sports massage therapy can help the tight calf muscles to relax and enhance flexibility. It brings about an overall improvement in the condition by releasing the tension, stimulating blood flow and resulting in healing.
Conclusion: Sore calves can be extremely painful and are mostly caused due to intense physical activities or incorrect movement patterns. While it is unpredictable when you may invite a sore calf, you can always take precautions like warming up before exercise or stretching your calves everyday to prevent suffering from such movement-restricting condition. And should sore calves be a regular problem, don’t hesitate to visit a reputable sports podiatrist in Mandurah and seek help at the right time. To know more about our podiatry services, reach us on 0895863046.