Often clients sit down to have a massage and are unaware how tight one area of there shoulder or neck is. This is very common and here is why:
We only notice the worse area of pain - so if our right shoulder is more painful, we have a tendency to assume our left shoulder is OK.
What are Trigger Points?
Trigger Points are hyper-irritable spots in muscle which are between 2mm - 10mm in diameter that are located frequently located where the nerves join the muscle fibers. Active trigger points are always tender or painful, and often refer pain, so trigger points in only of the largest shoulder muscles the trapezius often refers pain up the side of the neck. While latent trigger points are only painful when they are touched. This is why when I work, sometime you discover areas of your shoulders that you didn't know were painful, these are latent trigger points.
Trigger points can be found anywhere in the body but are extremely common in the shoulders.
So if latent trigger points are only painful when you touch them, do I need a massage to release them?
The simple answer is yes as they may restrict your range of movement, so you will feel tightness if you try and rotate your shoulders or they can reduce the strength of your muscles, which puts more strain on your joints.
What causes trigger points?
There are several ideas about what causes trigger points but no agreed theory. Below is a list of possible causes