Knots in your back muscles are caused by strain on the muscles (generally.) Knots are actually tender, contracted areas of soft tissue or muscle. Massage therapy is an excellent “tool” to help you get rid of your knots or muscle spasms.
How does a massage therapist find your knots?
Sometimes he or she will kind of just run into them. Either it feels ‘hard’ when all of the other tissue felt softer or a tight area will actually slow the gliding hand of a therapist as it explores and warms muscles.
A muscle knot or spasm feels like a small tight area that is harder then the surrounding tissue. Sometimes it feels like a pea or even as big as a tennis ball. Sometimes nearby tissue is also tight.
Sometimes muscle knots are so obvious that just about anyone can feel them. Sometimes knots are hidden or less obvious but a skilled massage therapist can still find your knots and knows how to treat them.
Also it is helpful if a client will say when it feels tender to the touch. Then the therapist knows for sure it is a tight muscle or knot. Other times it’s just nothing much–maybe a bone or cyst or scar tissue.
We would all love to know why it feels better to receive a massage than to do-it-ourselves. Even skilled therapists feel this way. I guess it is God’s way of making sure we ‘stay in touch’ with other people. We just cannot reach our own backs! (at least not most of us.)
But should you or your massage therapist blast away on your knots?
Sometimes the knot or muscle spasm will release from pressure. That’s why tennis ball therapy works.
But sometimes a knot will not release because it can’t.
In that case, there are muscles pulling on the knot and as long as they keep pulling the knot can’t relax. In that case, a skilled therapist will release the muscles (usually in the front of the body and neck) that are causing the muscle knot in your back.