Muscles and shoestrings

August’s posts will be part of a challenge by a fellow therapist to add brief posts each day this month.

Have you wondered why you get a pain when you didn’t do much?  I have people tell me their back went out from some simple, non-strenuous action, such as picking up a paper from the floor.  (To avoid this dangerous situation, obviously, is not to drop anything ever.  Or at least don’t pick them up).

A simple explanation I heard is the theory of muscles as shoestrings.  Shoestrings don’t break because you pull on them once, even if you give a mighty yank.  They break because they have been pulled on multiple times, and become slightly damaged and weakened with each pull over the course of time.

Muscles are similar to shoestrings.  Due to overuse or repetitive actions (such as carrying a large bag on the same shoulder daily), muscles can get tighter and suffer a series of minor injuries that are not noticeable of themselves.  But like a shoestring, they can only take so much before they let you know something needs to be changed.

Fortunately muscles don’t usually come completely apart as shoestrings do.  Also, they can heal and become stronger, which is good since muscles are harder to replace than shoestrings.

So take care of your muscles by paying attention to them, keeping them active, and making an adjustment or two in your routine if necessary.  Of course, your muscles will be grateful for a regular massage.

Muscles are also like rubber bands.  Click this link to learn why.

Barry is a licensed Massage Therapist at Main Street Massage in Hudson, Ohio.  Find out more about him, his business, and massage at

Leave a comment


  1. Great analogy Barry, and a great post to kick off your 31 day challenge! 🙂

  1. Muscles and little kids | Hudson Massage

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