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Heat is commonly used "loosen" muscles, but what exactly is happening to relax the muscle? It wouldn't make sense that increased blood flow alone would relax muscle.

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Read this it was very helpful to me as a Reiki Practitioner who wants to know how the heat generated by my hands on therapy with my patients for Hospice brings such relaxation to them.
http://healthyliving.azcentral.com/effects-temperature-muscular-contraction-11504.html

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  • $\begingroup$ Please add some more details to your answer. Your answer may become invalid if the link expires or gets broken. $\endgroup$ – another 'Homo sapien' Jun 15 '17 at 17:13
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There may not be one because it may not have any effect.

It appears to be a placebo effect. There is not a lot of clinical evidence heat does anything beneficial, in fact cold may actually be more effective. Evidence of an effect appears to be mostly anecdotal or unscientific "studies".

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