What is Sports Massage?
Sports massage is usually recommended by professional healthcare workers as part of a training routine for those that lead a physically active life. Massage is one of the earliest recorded forms of physical therapy, and sports massage is a vital element in the process of recovering from a sports injury by helping to optimise the body’s own healing powers.
As a regular part of a recommended training plan, massage techniques can help to restore balance to tired and aching muscles. This helps them to work much more efficiently as well as recover quickly from training. The techniques used in a sports massage will “flush through” your muscles – drawing in the goodness which the body’s own systems supply, and removing the waste deposits that naturally build up as part of a challenging sports training routine.
If you are recovering from a specific injury, then sports massage is an important requirement of the healing process, aiding the recovery time. Long massage strokes help to bring nutrients into the damaged muscle. Later in the recovery process localised deep friction will break down scar tissue whilst mobilisation techniques will help to restore a full range of movement.
Who is Sports Massage for?
Sports massage is not confined to sportsmen and women. Those leading a physically active life will benefit from a massage of this type. This kind of therapy can also help to get rid of the aches and pains that arise in everyday life.
Competitive sportsmen and women in the fields of running, tennis, climbing, cycling and swimming will often factor regular sports and remedial massage at a sports injury clinic into their training programmes.
Other physically active people benefit from sports massage to treat sporting or repetitive strain injuries.
Sports massage can also help resolve problems arising from the workplace, such as the aches and pains often encountered by people working in careers like hairdressing, or back and neck pain brought on by poor posture in an office environment and from long commutes. These pains can be alleviated by massage and help with your posture to avoid small niggles developing into serious problems.
When should you avoid sports massage?
If you are feeling generally unwell
If you are suffering from a high body temperature
If you have any recent bruises, sprains, burns or other similar conditions
If you are suffering from tumors or swelling of any kind
If you suffer with varicose veins or thrombosis
If you have cancer or a skin melanoma
If you suffer from Haemophilia (blood clotting condition)
If you currently have an infectious skin disease such as herpes
If you are diabetic. Did you know that massage has the exact same effect on your blood sugar level as exercise? You must ensure you have appropriate medication available.