What is D.O.M.S?

What is D.O.M.S?


So, you have made your decision to transform your body and become a better steward of the body God has given you. You have even gone to a gym, or starting working out at home, but it has been several years (or longer) since you have worked out and now you are so sore that you cannot make it up or down your steps, or function in your day to day life.  Congratulations, sounds to me like you have DOMS.


Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness or DOMSas it is most commonly referred as, is seen after Intense Resistance training or Intense Sprinting. Muscle Soreness is a common complaint, especially among beginners or if you are training after a long time away from working out.


Almost every person that has ever lifted weights (or run sprints for the matter) has experienced it at one time or another and its your body’s normal response to Intense Weight Training and or sprinting. In this article you will discover why it happens, how to prevent and reduce it and common questions regarding training while sore.


What causes D.O.M.S.?

D.O.M.S. may appear to be the same as the pain and discomfort you feel during exercise, however it is entirely different. The Muscle pain you feel during your workout is due to the irritation and stimulation of pain nerve endings. These nerve endings are irritated by metabolic byproducts (i.e. lactic acid) of energy metabolism.


D.O.M.S. is typically experienced 24-48 hours after your training. DOMS can be attributed to a combination of one or more of these factors:


  • The micro trauma to the Muscle fibers
  • Increased Free radicals
  • Increased leakage of calcium
  • The buildup of lactic acid that was allowed to lay dormant in the muscle (i.e. you forgot to cool down)
  • Eccentric Muscle contraction (referred to as negatives) causes more muscle damage and therefore more soreness.

Note:  The use of “negatives” in your resistance training program should be limited to only once a week to ten days and should never be implemented by a novice.



Does it mean Im Growing?

Muscle soreness may or may not be an indication of growth.  It is most commonly a sign of doing too much, too fast, and not implementing Gradual Progressive Overload. Often times it is a sign of a poor personal trainer and not a great workout.



Muscle Soreness usually is a discomfort and pain in the affected muscles, but it may also show muscle tenderness to the touch, blood and fluid pooling and limited range of motion. Any effort to move the muscles, even normal activities causes pain.  This pain is however dull aching in nature, compare this to a sharp pain of muscle injury.


How to prevent Muscle Soreness?

Proper Warm Ups and Cool Downs will help prevent Muscle soreness along with keeping the volume of training at a reasonable level per muscle group. 1-2 exercises per bodypart group for 3-4 sets using a resistance that causes failure or near failure in the 8-12 repetition range should suffice.


Treatment of Muscle Soreness.

As Muscle Soreness is a normal response of your body no active intervention is necessary. Proper rest and recuperation is enough. If soreness is very annoying aspirin will help. You can also try treating the afflicted muscle group(s) by applying ice.


Muscle Soreness, when mild, is NOT an indication to stop exercising.  You just need to differentiate between being hurt and being injured.  By all means, if you are injured seek medical attention at once.


Keep these things in mind and before you know it, you will be well on your way to total body transformation and moreso total life transformation.

To learn more great exercise science check out Absession.

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