What is Sports Massage?

Sports massage works to relax and relieve pain in muscles, tendons, ligaments and the fascia. These tissues can become tight for a variety of reasons including overtraining, injury, or even just sitting in front of a computer all day. It can work on specific muscle groups or muscle joint regions to bring relief.

Sports massage helps muscles to heal, can prevent future injuries and improve your body’s performance. It also works to relieve muscle spasms that are caused by the buildup of lactic acid in the muscles. This type of massage can also use trigger point techniques for those points that are especially tight. When constant pressure is applied to these areas, the muscle can release and relieve the tension.

Many people believe that sports massage is only for professional athletes; however, that just not the case. Non-athletes and those who are not sports pros can also benefit from sports massage.

Plenty of those who participate in sports are looking for an edge to improve their performance. Sports massage can do this. But it can also help people who need to find relief and improve their overall wellbeing.

The Benefits of Sports Massage

Sports massage carries a wide range of benefits for non-athletes and non-pro athletes alike:

  • Reduces muscle tension, muscle pain, and discomfort
  • Increases range of motion, which can lead to improved performance
  • Decreased muscle stiffness and soreness after exercise or physical activity
  • Reduce recover time after an injury
  • Increased relaxation
  • Reduction in physical and psychological stress
  • Improve quality and quantity of sleep
  • Improve muscle length & flexibility (works to support injury recovery/injury prevention)
  • Increases energy levels
  • Relieves chronic pain
  • Relieves chronic tension headaches
  • Improved posture
  • Improve overall body performance

This is what you can expect from sports massage, even if you’re not an athlete. Keep in mind that not everyone sees the same level of improvement. However, it can definitely loosen up your body and improve mobility.

Think of it this way. When you’re in constant pain, it’s impossible for your body to function properly. The body tends to restrict motion to an area that is painful. This is a natural response; however, if that part of the body isn’t moved over a long period of time, the pain sets in due to constant muscle tension, and more. Then the range of movement is impaired. For instance, if you have a lower back issue, you may not walk correctly. Doing so for a long time can even lead to other painful conditions.

On the other hand, when your body works properly, you can avoid injury, as well as perform sports at top performance. For non-athletes, this may mean that you sit correctly at the computer, thereby avoiding injuries, muscle tension, and so on. You’ll also be able to complete daily chores more comfortably and have overall better quality of life when not dealing with constant pain and muscle tension.

Stress & Our Body

When the body is constantly under stress, the muscles tense up. This is the body’s way of protecting itself. When stress occurs suddenly, then all the muscles in the body can tense up at one time. Then, when the stress has passed, muscles are meant to relax again. However, when you’re under chronic stress, the muscles are constantly in the protective mode, which means they’re tense. Muscles that are tense for long periods can lead to problems in other parts of the body.

For example, tension headaches and migraines are often associated with chronic muscle tension in the shoulders, neck and head. However, muscle tension in other parts of the body can lead to other stress-related health issues, too.

People readily adapt to this new “normal,” going on to live their lives as usual. However, they don’t realise the toll this is taking on their physical and mental health.

Consider an office worker who is not an athlete. They sit a computer all day and may develop regular headaches, along with pain in their neck, shoulders and back. Sports massage can help them as much as it helps a pro athlete. Massage can treat and relieve these health issues, making life more pleasant and even making these people more productive at work.

What to Expect at my First Sports Massage Session

This is a common question and it’s one that you should ask, especially if you’re nervous or unsure about this type of treatment.

At your first appointment, we’ll have you fill out some paperwork, which includes questions on your medical history, past injuries, and your current issue. Our therapist will review the information to see what may be contributing to your medical issue, and may ask you some questions about health issues you have, what medications you take, about your lifestyle, and previous injuries.

The therapist may also do a postural assessment, range of motion tests, and may conduct a visual/manual assessment of your painful areas.

The therapist will then review all this information and make a diagnosis, then talk with you about a treatment plan that may include several options. You make the decision on the type of treatment. We help you to make an informed decision by providing you with all the necessary information on your condition and treatment options. But the choice is up to you. Once you agree on a treatment plan with the therapist, then they will begin treatment.

You may be asked to remove appropriate items of your outer clothing. We also advise patients to wear suitable undergarments and to bring loose fitting shorts. Some therapists use creams or oils to start the massage. These are used to help the muscles and tissues warm up from increased blood flow.

When the massage starts out, the pressure will be light. As the muscles warm up, then the pressure will increase. Sports massage uses a deeper pressure than Swedish massage. While this may cause some discomfort, you should not experience too much pain. If you do feel pain, then let the therapist know. They can adjust the pressure was needed to keep you comfortable. However, you will feel a little discomfort, and this is normal.

We’re here to help relieve your pain and muscle tension—that’s the goal! So, if you’d like to make an appointment with one of our therapists, or have questions about sports massage, please contact us today.