Although it may appear to be counterintuitive, strength training can be beneficial to muscle pain.
Working your muscles to relieve muscle discomfort may seem illogical, but a new animal research reveals there is a method to such madness. Resistance or strength training, according to University of Iowa researchers, stimulates androgen receptors, which protect against chronic musculoskeletal discomfort.
Even if you don't have any muscular pain right now, the team believes that doing strength exercises on a regular basis can help avoid future muscle pains and disorders.
People suffering from low back pain or osteoarthritis are well aware that exercise can help make chronic pain more bearable. However, there hasn't been a lot of research done on how resistance training can aid with musculoskeletal pain.
To investigate the benefits of strength training, researchers trained mice to climb a ladder while carrying modest weights. Regular ladder climbing aided in the development of the front paws' strength.
The researchers next administered a weak acid solution, which should cause muscle soreness when exercising out.
Eight weeks of resistance training, on the other hand, prevented the development of muscle soreness in both male and female mice. The study discovered that if muscle discomfort was present, the ladder-climbing exercise helped reduce the pain – but only in male mice. Furthermore, exercise caused a transitory elevation in testosterone in male mice but not female mice.
Previous research has discovered a link between testosterone and pain relief. The researchers put an androgen receptor-blocking medication into some rats to assess its role in muscle discomfort. The androgen blocker caused muscle discomfort in the animals. However, after the exercise-induced protective effect was in place, the pain generated by the androgen blocker did not affect the mice.
According to the findings, androgen receptors are required to defend against muscle soreness. Despite the fact that the study was conducted on mice, it could lead to increased recommendations for strength or resistance workouts in people suffering from chronic pain.
Pain, the official journal of the International Association for the Study of Pain, published the findings.