Ask the Expert: Should I Feel Sore After a Workout? And Tips on How to Relieve It

Feeling sore after a workout is one of the most common things exercisers face. Many people believe that it can indicate that you had a good workout, but for some, it could be a setback in their fitness progress.

We asked Merrithew® Instructor Trainer Lisa Kaye to discuss muscle soreness, why it happens and some tips to relieve it.


Why do I feel sore after exercising and is this the sign of a good workout?

“There are a lot of reasons why your muscles feel sore after a workout. However, contrary to popular belief, you don’t necessarily need to feel sore after exercise to prove you’ve had a good workout.

“One of the most common reasons for muscle soreness is if you’re starting a new workout program. If your first session is particularly intense or long, you are likely to experience Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness (DOMS) in the next hours or a day or two after exercise,” Lisa explains.

“But being sore doesn’t necessarily mean you’ve had a more effective workout – it usually means you’re doing something your muscles aren’t used to. So if you regularly exercise and find you aren’t feeling as sore after your session, it’s a key indicator that your muscles have become better at dealing with the strain and are recovering from the activity,” Lisa says.

What is Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness?

DOMS is usually a positive sign for exercisers. It is best described as when your muscles feel sore or strained. You might feel this after an intense workout and that just indicates that your muscles are progressing to a stronger state. DOMS is one of the most common after-effects when you start a new training program or indulge in an intense workout.

Tips for dealing with muscle soreness after a workout

Feeling sore after a workout can make it difficult for some to continue with their fitness journey. But rest assured, mild soreness is common for exercisers of any level. The good news is there are some ways to manage the pain.

Stretch: Gentle stretching after the workout helps reduce lactic acid build-up which is the main cause of soreness. Try some simple stretches like arm circles, leg swings and spinal twists. The Foam Roller is a great tool for reducing muscle soreness and improving post-workout recovery. Try these exercises.

Take it easy: Push yourself, but don’t be too hard, especially if you’re a beginner. Choose a workout program that’s designed for your fitness level. Start with a beginner-friendly program and progress once you feel ready

Cool-down: The cool-down phase is the most important post-workout aspect. Reserve at least 10 minutes at the end of every workout to do some light stretching or for an easy cool-down walk or jog.

Lisa Kaye doing Matwork exercises

Why do I feel less sore after a Pilates workout?

Pilates is one of the most effective low-impact workouts and it’s extremely effective at building participants’ strength without causing too much muscle soreness, Lisa says.

“With Pilates, our aim is to progress you through a series of body weight and spring resistance exercises that will challenge and improve your balance, mobility, core strength and dynamic stability. It will help you work on muscle strength and fluidity rather than feeling sore,” Lisa explains.




Related Posts

November 29th, 2023

5 Props Every Pilates Instructor Should Have

Whether you teach in the studio, in your home or in your clients’ homes, there are a few exercise props that every pilates instructor should have to offer an effective workout for varying fitness levels. To keep things simple, we opted for a...

November 1st, 2023

Why F1 Recreation is Partnering With Eleiko

  Throughout the years, our company's aim has always been to inspire our customers to incorporate a positive lifestyle change for themselves. With that, we made a commitment to always deliver exceptional value through our products. Today, we...

October 31st, 2023

Tips for sprucing up and bringing joy to your home gym or workout space

If you’re spending more time working out at home these days— and maybe enjoying it more than you thought— now might be the best time to invest in or spruce up your home gym or workout space to make it somewhere you really look forward to...

October 25th, 2023

Pilates Reformer Buyers’ Guide: How to Choose the Best Pilates Reformer for Your Needs, Fitness Goals and Studio Space

Found in Pilates studios, fitness and franchise facilities, golf clubs, hotels and home gyms, and used by elite and recreational athletes, office workers, pre- and post-natal women, celebrities and rehab clients, the Pilates Reformer is one of...

October 18th, 2023

Recovery and Wellness: Ariel Lim’s Journey with STOTT PILATES®

Ariel Lim — Merrithew® Instructor Trainer and the owner of Merrithew Host Training Center WITH PILATES® — faced a Lumbar 4-5-disc issue during her teenage years and later acquired a T1-L1 disc problem due to an accident. These personal...

October 11th, 2023

How To Create A Robust Home Gym When You Don’t Have A Lot Of Space

You don’t really need a lot of room to create a great home workout area. Just a few square feet can be used to for a combination of cardio, strength and bodyweight training. A total-body workout space can even fit smartly into a corner of a studio...

October 4th, 2023

What is Pilates? Everything You Need to Know About Pilates

Pilates is a mind-body exercise method with a history spanning over 100 years. Initially embraced by professional dancers in the early 20th century for its ability to prevent injuries and increase flexibility, today, it’s practiced by more...

September 27th, 2023

The Benefits of Pilates: Achieving Physical and Mental Wellness

Pilates, a time-honored exercise method with a rich history spanning over a century, has taken the fitness world by storm. Loved by millions around the globe, Pilates has transcended its origins as a favorite of dancers and athletes, capturing the...

September 20th, 2023

How to Choose the Right Pilates Reformer for Home Workouts and Professional Pilates Studios

Pilates Reformers are one of the most versatile and essential pieces of equipment for anyone seeking to enhance their muscle strength, flexibility, and overall well-being. Whether you're planning to use one at home or in a professional Pilates...

September 13th, 2023

Getting Started with a Cardio Workout Routine

The wide range of benefits provided by a regular cardio routine is pretty obvious. According to the Mayo Clinic, aerobic exercise benefits include: Strengthens heart and muscles Burns calories Helps to control appetite Boosts mood...