Trigger point is a tender area of local sensitivity in a muscle and indicated build up of metabolic waste. Damage to muscles can be caused by external or internal factors, including strain, overuse, emotional distress, poor nutrition, poor posture, exposure to cold temperatures, lack of regular exercise and trauma. The muscle fibres respond by contracting  and twisting, making the area feel like a hard lump, or a firmness that is tender to the touch. This lump called a trigger point. When a trigger point is active, the pain can be very painful locally or refer to other areas of the body.

Active trigger points can contribute to headaches, neck pain, low back pain, shoulder pain, leg pain, the symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome and tennis elbow, as well as many other ailments.

Trigger points are used in deep tissue massage to relieve pains and increase range of motion by applying pressure on area of triggers pain either at that location or somewhere else.