What’s a Knot? Understanding Tight Muscles and Fascia


by Mary Kubisch, CMT

You probably have heard this term many times.  People constantly say, “I have a huge knot in my back!” Can a muscle really get tied into a knot? Well, no, not really….

Our muscle fibers run in all different directions and are layered on top of each other. Then, they are covered by a sticky, Saran-wrap-like sheath called fascia. When we sit in the same position for hours, injure ourselves, or are chronically dehydrated, this fascia starts to stick together. This can result in the hard, lumpy feeling referred to as a knot. Knots can be painful, especially if there is a nerve being compressed within the knot.

An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. The best strategy for treating a knot is implementing a plan to avoid them in the first place. In order to keep your body knot-free, be sure to do the following:

  1. Hydrate ~ Drink plenty of water. A good rule of thumb is to divide your weight by two and drink that many ounces of water.

  2. Take Breaks ~ For every hour of stationary sitting, get up and take a 5-minute break to walk and stretch.

  3. Exercise ~ Frequent exercise, like Pilates, gets the blood flowing and moves the muscles to prevent fascia from sticking together.

  4. Schedule regular massages - Having a massage therapist manually work on the muscles will break up the fascia and keep muscles pliable. Our certified massage therapist, Mary Kubisch, is here to help. Click HERE to view her schedule and book your next appointment.

Eurona Tilley