If you are an athlete, you know that a good sports massage can make you feel ten times better after a rough match or practice. It is usually performed before, during or after a heavy workout. When you work your body hard, your muscles are constantly constricting and relaxing, pulling, pushing, pushing, thrusting and lifting, so it is no wonder that they crave attention afterward. There are different kinds of sports massage that focus on different aspects of your muscles. Depending on the type of muscle, the type of pain or the type of release you want, you may request one of these specific massages.
Deep Tissue Massage
A deep tissue massage is used to release tension and built-up pressure in the deep muscle tissues of your body. It focuses on specific areas of your body that are tight, stressed or fatigued and is often used to combat scar tissue that can be painful and injurious to your body. This type of massage uses slow, deliberate movements and deep pressure from the fingers onto a specific area. Deep tissue massage is known for feeling uncomfortable or even painful during and right after massaging, but releases great amounts of muscle tension, leaving you feeling great within a couple of days.
When an athlete becomes injured with a sprain or a stress fracture, it is often part of the rehabilitation process to massage the afflicted area with gentle rubbing and pressure. Generally, massage helps get blood flowing through your body and allows more oxygen to get to your muscles. The same theory applies to small injuries. When you sprain your ankle, your body immediately tries to mend the injury by pumping blood and nutrients to the area. This causes the injury to become inflamed and, consequently, more painful. By massaging the area, the blood is pushed from the injury, helping your blood flow correctly and allowing more oxygen to get to the affected area.
Most sports massages are taken from some form of combination of swedish massage and shiatsu. Swedish massage is known for working deep muscle tissue and revitalizing the body, both of which are pertinent to any athlete. It focuses on applying pressure to strained muscles in order to increase oxygen flow and eliminate toxins that tire the muscles. From long and short strokes with palms, fingers, knuckles and elbows to kneading, percussive motions and vibrating motions, swedish massage decreases the recovery period of tired muscles, making it an ideal type of sports massage for athletes who train and compete daily.
Competitive athletes are constantly putting tremendous strain on their bodies and their muscles are continually tired and stressed. Even if you’re a casual runner or club athlete, sports massage is an important part to your lifestyle. It helps reduce the toxins and strain of achey muscles, shortens the recovery time of injured and exhausted muscles, helps reduce scar tissue and can increase performance by stimulating blood flow and raising oxygen levels in the body.