Knot in Calf

by Darren
(London)

I have just started your running program and get a slight burning in my right calf... so I stopped running!

It now feels like a knot on the right side of my calf. What is this? A strain a tear or just cramp?

Please help as I am determined to finish the running program.


Answer by Dominique:
Hi Darren,
Thanks for your question about the burning in your right calf.

The knot you are describing in your calf indicates a calf strain or a calf tear (likely). It is best to take some rest. Now, I here you thinking, I want to finish what I started. Yes, good attitude, but really, give it a few days to heal, then just pick up from where you stopped. Believe me, much better than letting the pain get worse and worse!

As the area is inflamed, you need to ice the calf. One thing you should not do is stretching. When the muscle is already hurting, possibly torn, stretching it further is not going to do much good. On the contrary, it may aggravate the situation.

A great thing to do is to massage the muscle. You can visit a qualified sports masseur, but a cheaper idea is self-massage. A great tool is The Stick, you simply roll it over the knot. It does a good job in getting to that deeper muscle tissue. And once you have it, you can use it over and over again. There are plenty of runners who use it regularly and love it!

Do it hard, get to that deeper tissue. This may hurt a fair bit, apply ice afterwards to make sure you keep inflammation of the area to a minimum.

Normally a few days of using the approach above should do the trick. As always, if pain persists or if you do not feel comfortable with the situation, go to a doctor for a hands-on opinion.


Hope this helps.
Kind regards,
Dominique


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