What's in a Sports
Sports play a big part in everybody's lives, many
of us love to get out on the weekend and have a good time with our mates and play a game of
football or rugby.
This can be a lot of fun until the end of the day
when those muscles that you hardly use all week long are suddenly put to the test.
This is where you find out that you are not as
young as you used to be with muscles that are now sore and stiff threatening to make the rest of
the weekend a bit uncomfortable.
Thankfully a good rub down with a bit of sports
cream can help relax those bruised muscles and make the pain go away.
In essence a sports cream is a
topical pain relieving medication that can be purchased over the counter and is applied directly to the skin in the
general area of the pain. It comes in several variations including creams, gels, lotion and now even in a
The most common form of topical sport creams or topical pain
medication smells like wintergreen and causes a warming sensation where it is applied. After the medication has had
a chance to work into the skin it slowly relieves the aches and pains caused by overworking the muscles.
These sports creams contain Salicylates in the form of Methyl
Salicylates which are the same ingredient found in aspirin. This ingredient has been found to be a very
effective pain reliever and can also reduce inflammation when it is absorbed into the skin. These compounds have
been shown to work well as they inhibit the production and spread of prostaglandins in the body. Prostaglandins
are the substances the body produces that are responsible for causing pain and swelling.
Other types of sports cream may include capsaicin which is the
ingredient in hot peppers such as jalapenos and habaneras that makes them hot to taste. When applied directly to the skin capsaicin has
been shown to reduce a chemical known as substance P that your nerves cells use to send pain signals to your
Most of the sports cream brands also contain a counter irritant
such as menthol, eucalyptus oil or wintergreen. These ingredients are used to make the skin feel either hot or cold
which is thought to help you feel better by distracting your mind from the pain with a soothing feeling.
Do the pain relievers in a sports cream actually work? Research
shows that overall most people do get some relief from the pain associated with overexertion or stretching their
muscles a little too far. Although many of us reach for the sports cream to relieve the aches and pains associated
with playing sport we should also be aware of the fact that it is possible through misuse to overdose on them
Before using a sport cream you should make sure that you take a
minute to read the label carefully and follow the instructions. Proper use of the cream along with giving your
muscles the rest they need is the best way to get back into the game as soon as possible.