A twinge is a sting or pang of pain that happens suddenly. Are you recovering from a basketball injury? You may still feel a twinge of discomfort in your knee when you do a layup.
You can experience a physically painful twinge, but there are also twinges that are more emotional, like the twinge of sadness you feel when you look at photos of your old house. Use this word as a verb, too, if you like: "Did your shoulders twinge when you gave your little brother a piggyback ride?" Long ago, to twinge meant to pinch, and the word's origin traces back to the Old English twengan, "to pinch."