Benefits of massage

Regular sports massage used as part of an athlete’s training regime can help to:

Speed up recovery and healing process
Following hard training or competition the muscles suffer a build up of bi products of exercise and the fibres can suffer micro trauma. Massage can improve the circulation and lymphatic flow which helps to remove waste products from the tissues and replace them with fresh blood and nutrients which assist repair
Monitoring progress of training
Application of regular massage can monitor how the athlete is responding to training. Hard training can make the muscles and tissues tight, hard or inelastic and the training will not increase performance. The athlete being aware of the condition of his muscles can fine tune training and know to back off and recover, do more stretching a go back to the training plan after active recovery.

Safely increase the quality and quantity of training
By aiding recovery and preventing injury athletes can train harder and more often

Injury prevention
Early treatment can prevent a problem developing into an injury. A massage therapist can detect areas of muscle tightness and over-use. Break down scar tissue – muscle function can be affected by too much scar tissue, friction techniques can break down and remodel scar tissue

Relax and stretch muscles
By using a variety of soft tissue techniques

Restore flexibility and mobility
Improving muscle function and using stretching the athlete can benefit from improved technique.

Reduce stress and tension
Massage stimulates the nervous system which reduces tension, calms the nerves and stimulates the digestion. This gives a sense of relaxation and well being.

Assist in physical and mental preparation prior to an event.

Improve athletes self awareness of their body actions

All of the above can enhance performance and extend the overall life of sport activity.

Pre event Massage

When used as part of a warm up massage can help in preparation for an event. Depending on the techniques used by the therapist an athlete can aim to feel ‘fired up’ for an event or calmed down if feeling nervous.

Post event massage

A post event massage helps to flush the build up of waste and toxins from the muscles which aids recovery and helps to prevent muscle soreness.
There has recently been some scientific evidence to support the positive effects of massage:
Manchester University Study  – Massage reduced inflammation  in muscles post exercise  – Cycling Weekly 1st March 2012

American Association for the advancement of Science – Massage therapy appears to be clinically beneficial by reducing inflammation and promoting mitochondrial biogenesis – Sci, Transl. Med. 1st Feb 2012

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