As a sports person you always want to be able to perform at your best during training and in competition. Making sure you can achieve your physical goals. You do not want injury or muscle fatigue to stop this. So, the question is will having a sports massage help me perform better and reduce the risk of injury?
The answer is YES. Sports massage will reduce muscle fatigue post event/post long working hours. This will leave you more ready to continue training/working with less muscle soreness. It can also:
- reduce Blood Pressure which helps with your overall health.
- reduces heart rate.
- Lower’s anxiety and stress levels which leads to clearer thinking. It stabilises cortisol levels which is a stress hormone.
- Improves connective tissue healing, which promotes muscle elasticity/flexibility.
- prevent injury from happening by improving muscle flexibility.
- decrease muscle spasms.
- improve your sleep.
- enhances an athlete’s psychological readiness pre-event/pre-training.
Typically, sports massage techniques are fast-paced and incorporate stretching and compression movements. A sports massage therapist will use a variety of deep tissue techniques throughout a treatment which involve longitudinal stripping, friction techniques, tapotement and muscle energy techniques such as PNF stretching, active movement and trigger point compression. These techniques are used to warm the muscle up, to increase local blood circulation and to reduce muscle tension.
Although sports massage therapy treatment can be tailored to the needs of a sports participant who is just about to compete in an event or, who has just completed an event, sports or deep tissue massage can also be used to treat injuries or muscular pain and discomfort, by promoting both physiological and psychological benefits.
To get the best benefits from a sports massage a continued treatment regime would be advised. Sports massage varies from person to person depending on your lifestyle. Very few people put effort into taking good care of their body to help them perform, which is what leads to setbacks. They put more effort into their training and work but less effort into what the body needs alongside that, which is why issues can arise.
Monthly massage keeps the body in optimum condition and helps keep you energised and feeling loose. For people that exercise regularly – 3-4 times a week, we would strongly recommend having a sports massage every 2-4 weeks.
Catherine Pringle BSc. Sports Therapist.