What Is a Sports Massage?
You don't need to be an athlete to benefit from one.
Sports massage was developed to help athletes prepare their bodies for optimal performance, recover after a big event, or function well during training. However, contrary to what the name suggests, you don't have to be an athlete to benefit from sports massage. Sports massage emphasizes prevention and healing of injuries to the muscles and tendons and can be beneficial for people with injuries, chronic pain or restricted range of motion.
In sports massage, the therapist will assess hole body function and concentrate on a specific problem area that you present, usually associated with some sort of sports activity, such as running, tennis, or golf. Good understanding of kinesiology and human anatomy is imperative in performance of the techniques in sports massage
What Happens During a Sports Massage
Sports massage therapists will use a variety of techniques to achieve the desired goal. There are four types of sports massages:
Pre-event sports massage: a short, stimulating massage 15-45 minutes before the event. It is directed toward the parts of the body that will be involved in the exertion.
Post-event sports massage: given within an hour or two of the event, to normalize the body's tissues.
Restorative sports massage: given during training to allow the athlete to train harder and with less injury.
Rehabilitative sports massage: aimed at alleviating pain due to injury and returning the body to health.
An effective sports massage incorporates a combination of basic and advanced deep tissue massage techniques, stimulating the circulation of blood and lymph fluids. Trigger point therapy is also used to break down adhesions or knots in the muscles, allowing an increased range of motion. Combining these techniques helps increase blood flow to the tired muscles, speeding up recovery. It also helps the flow of blood back to the heart and the interstitial and lymph fluids around the body, essential for maintaining a healthy body.
When to Get a Sports Massage
If you are in training for an event or if you are playing a team sport and want to prevent an injury or if you are looking to improve performance and speed up recovery - these are all good reasons to get a sports massage!
A sports massage is a good choice if you have a specific problem—an achy knee from running, sore elbow from tennis or a stiff shoulder for instance. The therapist will focus on the problem areas — a frozen shoulder or pulled hamstring, for instance—rather than giving you a full-body massage.
It is also a good idea to see a specialist prior to the treatment, so they can help you identify and correct the movement pattern that might be causing your injury in the first place.
What ever the case might be at ActiveBody FT we will assist you to perform better at the activity that you enjoy!
Benefits of Sports Massage
Reduced muscle tension, increased ROM(range of motion), enhanced athletic performance, improved soft tissue function, decreased muscle stiffness and fatigue.