The science behind muscle repair

We’re all familiar with the burning sensation in our muscles after particularly hard exercise. It’s caused by micro-ruptures in the muscle, which eventually force it to grow and adapt.

But now researchers have seen what actually happens by using high-resolution microscopy, and it’s like a building site! The micro-ruptures are actually holes that form in the membrane of each muscle cell.

Within seconds, proteins inside the cell form an emergency repair patch which they apply to the hole (if they didn’t, the cell would die). This gives the cell time to properly repair the damage.

When this is done, scavenger proteins come back to eat up the patch and restore the cell to its former glory. Amazing.