It’s so easy to count it out, but recovery is an important step of any training programme. It doesn’t matter if you’re new to the gym or getting ready to run your next marathon. Any kind of exercise puts your body through wear and tear, so you want to give your muscles and tendons the opportunity to properly repair. This is why many active people opt for a form of massage therapy called a sports massage.
A true sports massage should include vigorous and deep muscle stimulation – so basically a good pummelling of the body. There are fundamental differences in some practical aspects and aims of a normal massage vs. sports therapy.
A normal massage is shallower as compared to the deep stimulation of a sports massage. The aim of a traditional massage is to alleviate general stress to increase circulation as well as relaxation, working along the muscle surface in order to relax the body. A sports massage is more targeted, working deeper on muscle fibres with a particular athletic enhancement goal.
What Is A Sports Massage?
A sports massage is a manual methodical manipulation of the soft tissue of the body to decrease injury potential and enhance training. Sports massage works well because it works deeply on realigning muscle fibres to ensure better functioning together with increasing nutrients and oxygen to the muscle.
The benefits of sports massage are:
- Increased range of motion,
- Decreased lactic acid build up,
- Decreased injury potential,
- Increased circulation, as well as
- Increased cellular metabolism.
Athletes who are under rehabilitative care are given massages according to the type of injury that they have sustained. For instance, patients who have a rotator cuff injury are given only light massages when the swelling is apparent and the pain is still fresh in order to help boost blood flow. Deep tissue massages are administered when the pain and swelling have abated.
How Does Sports Massage Work?
The impact of sports massage varies on the type of massage used. During the process of deep tissue massage, the therapist uses slow but firm pressure to reach deeper layers of the muscle as well as the fascia. It softens the hard, tight muscles. Deep tissue massage is popular among amateur as well as professional athletes.
Myofascial release may be easily mistaken for deep tissue initially. Fascia is the muscle’s protective covering, which gets hard and stiff with overuse. The constant pressure used during a myofascial release is utilised in order to soften the fascia. Therapists don’t make use of massage oils during a myofascial release so that they are able to accurately feel the fascia fibres.
On the other hand, Swedish massage is less extreme than deep tissue. It is mainly for releasing tension and relaxation. Its light but vigorous strokes assist with warming up the muscles.
Do you want to learn more about sports massage and become a sports masseuse? If you do then check out our Sports Massage Course. Follow this link to find out more.