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Burning muscles(stretching)

  1. Sep 7, 2007 #1
    While stretching, there comes a point that muscles start burning and in our martial arts class, we push ourself beyond that...till we can't take it anymore. What I am wondering is that what is really happening that makes my muscles burn?
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Sep 7, 2007 #2

    DaveC426913

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    The waste product of muscle exertion is lactic acid. If you exert your muscles so much that your various circulatory systems can't carry off the lactic acid fast enough, it will build up in the muscle tissue. This lactic acid is what causes the burning feeling.



    P.S. Your teachers are going to love you. Teachers dream of students as inquisitive as you.
     
  4. Sep 7, 2007 #3
    I just want to add that lactic acid is a product of anaerobic respiration. So as long as your muscles are getting adequate oxygen, the lactic acid shouldn't build up fast enough for you to be unable to carry it away (or if you're really oxygenated fully, I guess it wouldn't be forming at all). But, if you work too hard, the oxygen demand will eventually exceed your oxygen input, and the burning can begin.
     
  5. Sep 7, 2007 #4
    Really? He thinks I am quite disrespectful b/c I don't fully trust in his method wether he knows completely what he is doing.(I have always had problem in looking up to authority like they are god and not questioning their methods or philosophy)
    So when he assigns us so much hard work, I ask him these things wether its bad for my body, and he is like, "I don't know that much about health related issues but this is what my instructor taught me and his instructor taught him and I am going to teach you, all of us have turned out fine, but if you are still not satisfied then you can get a martial arts book and learn it your own way....but as long as you are in MY class, this is how things are gonna go."(I don't bug him as much as you guys, in 3 months of weekly sessions, I have asked 2 questions)
     
    Last edited: Sep 7, 2007
  6. Sep 7, 2007 #5

    DaveC426913

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    It's a very fine line between asking questions to seek knowledge and asking questions that challenge authority.
     
  7. Sep 8, 2007 #6
    My tone in asking question is neither criticizing, nor begging. The way I ask question is not, "well, my dumb head doesn't get how this will benefit me, could you be more descriptive?" That the fault is in me. And it is also not, "I doubt what you are saying is right b/c of blah" that fault is in him. I simply ask question in a calm and pleasant manner, "why not?" For instance, if he instructs us to not do something, if I ask simply why not, he will say b/c it is tradition and thats just the way it is, but if I persist, then he would become rude.

    True ex. there was an instrument and he says here is how you grip it, I said that I feel more comfortable in the other grip. But he said that he still wants me to grip it that way, but when I asked why, he is said it is the capeoira tradition. But when I said that can I still hold it that way, b/c that is really weird for me and it is a minor diff. in the finger, no one will notice. He said you can get your own instrument and then you can do it.(he is actually not a certified teacher, but his teacher gave him permit to teach us)

    (The past example I gave you was a made up one, just give you a feel about how he is, this is what actually happened)

    I understand that if the teacher sometimes teaches us something wrong, we should tell him that in privacy, not in public b/c it might affect his reputation as a teacher to the students. But I try to avoid those methods, but he is still rude to me.(I don't have this problem with other teachers, they do annoy me a lot though with the answer:"I don't know". Lucky for me I got you guys!

    In my opinion, he has an ego problem... my english teacher was telling me a lot of professors in college have that, however, so far, he is the only one, and he is not even a professor.
     
    Last edited: Sep 8, 2007
  8. Sep 8, 2007 #7

    Astronuc

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    He may not know the physiology of condition muscle, but he just wants his students to do it because that was how was taught and it apparently works.

    When weight training, the way to increase strength is to gradually increase the load, but also do many repititions, and sometimes doing them until one cannont lift a particular weight. The muscles are then doing anaerobic respiration, and by doing that, the muscles become better (adapt) to doing it, so gradually one can increase the duration of anaerobic respiration.

    In another thread, I posted a link to Penn State's fitness program.
    http://www.psu.edu/dept/fitness/faqs.htm
    On anaerobic respiration.
    In doing anaerobic respiration, the muscle adapt and develop the metabolic systems that improve the performance during such activity. That increases endurance.
     
  9. Sep 8, 2007 #8
    But is anaerobic activity bad for the health?(from absolute theoretical p.o.v.) To say, if someone's muscles started to burn, he would take a break for 2 min, and then keep playing, rather than pushing himself. Would that be better?
     
  10. Sep 8, 2007 #9

    Astronuc

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    No! The body (muscles) are designed to do anaerobic respiration in the 'short term'. By properly conditioning oneself, one can extend the range of both aerobic and anaerobic exercise, and the latter without injuring or damaging the body. If one feels the muscles 'burning', then its time to slow down or take a break.

    The point is to properly condition the muscles - to gradually build up with training. One does not go out and lift 220 lbs (100 kg) without proper training! If one does, one is risking serious injury.
     
  11. Sep 9, 2007 #10
    I tried searching on internet but couldn't exactly figure out...what is lactic acid? I mean I know it is a product of anaerobic metabolism what is it really?
     
    Last edited: Sep 9, 2007
  12. Sep 9, 2007 #11

    Astronuc

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    When perspiring, one looses salts (K, Na) from the body, which is why sweat is salty. In heavy exercise or strenuous activity like playing soccer or tennis, one needs to replace the salts in order to prevent an electrolyte imbalance, in addition to prevent dehydration. Gatorade is a good beverage for this reason.

    When I played soccer in high school, I would drink at least one liter (or two) of gatorade during a game, and then usually one liter after the game.
     
  13. Sep 9, 2007 #12

    DaveC426913

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    Here is an article that explains the process in detail. Caveat: I canoot vouch for the veracity of the information in the article, frankly I don't know anything about this subject.

    Lactic Acid
     
  14. Sep 9, 2007 #13
    In that article, he says, "Lactic acid (lactate) is not:

    responsible for the burn in the leg muscles when exercising very fast

    responsible for the soreness you experience in the 48 hours following a hard session

    a waste product "
     
  15. Sep 9, 2007 #14

    Astronuc

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    The claim on that site is:

    That would imply the pain or burning is associated with the production of lactic acid, but it is the H ions irritating the nerves. Well clearly irritation of the nerves will cause pain, but the question is - what is irritating the nerves. I cannot find another source to corroborate the claim of H ions being the cause.
     
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