What are Trigger Points?

Trigger points on front of body Trigger points on back of body

TRIGGER POINTS ARE TINY KNOTS THAT DEVELOP IN A MUSCLE WHEN IT IS INJURED OR OVERWORKED. COMMONLY A CAUSE OF MOST JOINT PAIN, THEY ARE KNOWN TO CAUSE HEADACHES, NECK AND JAW PAIN, LOW BACK PAIN, TENNIS ELBOW, AND CARPAL TUNNEL SYNDROME.

 

Based on the discoveries of Drs. Janet Travell and David Simons in which they found the causal relationship between chronic pain and its source, myofascial trigger point therapy is used to relieve muscular pain and dysfunction through applied pressure to trigger points of referred pain and through stretching exercises. These points are defined as localized areas in which the muscle and connective tissue are highly sensitive to pain when compressed. Pressure on these points can send referred pain to other specific parts of the body.

 

Trigger Point Therapy can relieve muscular aches and pains in association with these areas. It can also assist with the redevelopment of muscles and/or restore motion to joints. Trigger Point Performance products are specifically designed to support the massage associated with Trigger Point Therapy. Trigger points are described as hyperirritable spots in skeletal muscle that are associated with palpable nodules in taut bands of muscle fibers. Trigger point researchers believe that palpable nodules are small contraction knots and a common cause of pain. Compression of a trigger point may elicit local tenderness, referred pain, or local twitch response. The local twitch response is not the same as a muscle spasm. This is because a muscle spasm refers to the entire muscle entirely contracting whereas the local twitch response also refers to the entire muscle but only involves a small twitch, no contraction.

 

These trigger point charts show specific areas that have been identified as trigger points and typical trigger point referral patterns. By strengthening, toning, and massaging these areas, flexibility and strength that has been lost can potentially be regained.

 

THERE ARE SIX MAJOR AREAS OF THE BODY THAT WE FEEL ARE KEY PLAYERS IN THE HUMAN BIOMECHANICAL CHAIN. WE CALL THIS "ULTIMATE 6" AND WE BUILD UPON THIS FOUNDATION BY TARGETING THESE SPECIFIC AREAS RESULTING IN EVEN GREATER EFFICIENCY OF MOVEMENT.

 

Read more about the Ultimate 6 Areas.

 

Ultimate 6 Areas
  • Soleus
  • Quadriceps
  • Iliotibial (IT) Band
  • Psoas
  • Piriformis
  • Pectorals

 

The trigger point model states that unexplained pain frequently radiates from these points of local tenderness to broader areas, sometimes distant from the trigger point itself. Practitioners claim to have identified reliable referred pain patterns, allowing practitioners to associate pain in one location with trigger points elsewhere. Many chiropractors and massage therapists find the model useful in practice, but the medical community at large has not embraced trigger point therapy. Although trigger points do appear to be an observable phenomenon with defined properties, there is a lack of a consistent methodology for diagnosing trigger points and a dearth of theory explaining how trigger points arise and why they produce specific referred pain patterns.

 

Complements of Wikipedia, the free Encyclopedia.

 

The information contained herein is not intended to be used as or to replace professional medical advice, nor does it constitute medical diagnosis or treatment. It is provided for educational purposes only. You assume full responsibility for how this information is used. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare provider before starting any new treatment or discontinuing an existing treatment. Consult with your healthcare provider about any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.