Sports Massage is an effective procedure for releasing tension and reinstating balance to the musculoskeletal system. It is valuable to an athlete’s preparation and recovery, stopping injury and helping to achieve optimum performance. It also has benefits for each and every one, athlete or not.
Sports Massage can help to reduce tiredness/fatigue, alleviate swelling, reduce muscle tension, promote flexibility, prevent injury and prepare the body for performance. Typically, it is used before or after an athletic or other sporting event, and many athletes use Sports Massage Therapy regularly as a necessary part of their training routine.
If you are looking to improve your performance, do so by implementing a training schedule specific to your sport or needs; often this involves a regime aimed at enhancing skill, endurance, strength and speed. This increase in training can lead to the body experiencing additional stress and controlled overuse. When massage is included in this regime, it can help to aid performance and prevent injury.
At Therapy-First Physiotherapy we ensure that each session is aimed at your needs, this leads to a body less susceptible to injury and a well-prepared athlete.
What Are the Benefits of Sports Massage Therapy?
- Enhanced tissue permeability: Massage causes the tissue membrane pores to widen, allowing fluids and nutrients to pass through more readily. This enables waste products such as lactic acid to be removed rapidly and creates an environment whereby oxygen and nutrients are quickly delivered to the target muscles, allowing an enhanced recovery.
- Increased flexibility: Massage stretches muscle tissue in a multidirectional manner, both longitudinally and laterally. It can also have a similar effect on the muscular sheath and surrounding fascia, allowing a beneficial release of stored tension and pressure.
- Scar tissue realignment: Each and every time a muscle receives trauma or injury, scar tissue is formed which can affect the muscle itself as well as the tendons and ligaments. If not treated correctly at the time of injury, this scar tissue can form haphazardly, resulting in the potential for long-term inflexibility issues. Massage assists in realigning the scar tissue formation and reduces the likelihood of subsequent injury and/or pain.
- Enhanced microcirculation: Massage enhances the blood flow to the tissues of the target muscles in a similar manner to exercise. In addition to this, massage also causes blood vessels to dilate enabling oxygen and nutrients to pass through more readily.
- Inhibition of pain: A combination of tension and waste products within a muscle can often result in the sensation of pain. Massage lessons this painful feeling by its ability to reduce tension and remove waste products. It also encourages the release of endorphins.
- Stimulates relaxation response: Massage creates an environment whereby heat generation, enhanced circulation and increased flexibility are all promoted. All of these factors play a role in stimulating mechanoreceptors in the body and creating relaxation.
- Reduced anxiety levels: Through stimulating a relaxation response, massage has the additional benefit of lowering anxiety levels, creating a mood enlightening experience.
- Invigorating bodily response: If the sports massage is completed utilising brisk movements prior to a sporting event then it can create an invigorating bodily response.
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