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  • Writer's pictureDana D.

What is Trigger Point Therapy?

trigger point therapy

Most people are familiar with the popular types of massages, such as Swedish massage, massage therapy, and deep tissue massage, but many are not familiar with trigger point therapy.

Trigger Points are described as hyper-irritable spots in the skeletal muscle that are associated with palpable nodules in taut bands of muscle fibers. In other words, a trigger point is a knot is an area within your muscle tissue that’s extremely tight, which can cause pain in other parts of the body. For example, if you have a trigger point in your back, you might feel pain in your neck which can lead to pain in your head. This pain can either be a sharp and intense pain, or it can be a dull pain, like a headache. You may initially think the source of the pain is in the head when it is actually in the neck. A lot of the time, where you feel the pain isn’t where the problem lies. 

Trigger points occur on tender spots in a contracted muscle where there is decreased circulation, spasm or increased nerve sensitivity. These can be caused by stress, repetitive or overuse of a muscle, an accident, muscular imbalance, or not stretching after physical activity. 

Trigger point therapy consists of applying pressure on different trigger points throughout the body to alleviate pain in various other parts of your body. You can perform trigger point therapy on yourself, using the chart posted below. Apply pressure on each point for about 10-30 seconds to help release the muscle spasm and alleviate the pain.

trigger points

The Trigger Point model states that unexplained pain frequently radiates from these points of local tenderness to broader areas in the muscular tissue. Massage Therapists use Trigger Point Therapy to help release the muscles during a massage. They identify these pain centers, and manipulate the muscle tissue back into a relaxed position. Due to trigger point massage being a more targeted approach that is focused on releasing painful trigger points, the sessions are more therapeutic and results oriented rather than a luxurious or relaxing experience. In the following video, you will learn a technique you can do at home to roll out tight quads and hamstrings with a ball! There are trigger points in both of these muscles that can refer into our knees, glutes, and lower back:

--> Ready to try a trigger point therapy session out for yourself? Visit to book your session!

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