A sports massage is a deep massage that promotes an increased circulation of blood and lymph fluids around the body. Firm pressure is used to break down knots and widen the range of motion of stiffened joints or muscles. Trigger point therapy and various assisted stretching techniques are incorporated as part of the treatment.
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The primary purpose of a RSM is to relieve pain and return the body to its former pre-injury state. In this massage injuries are treated as well as the surrounding areas that have been effected by the injury trauma.
This is used while an athlete is in training, and helps them practice harder while, at the same time, decreases the chances of injury occurring.
This type of treatment is used for body maintenance. When somebody has recovered from an injury, one of the best ways to keep the injury at bay is through regular maintenance treatment. We have many patients who, following their course of physio treatment will see us once a month to keep their body at optimal level.
This is a vigorous but shortened treatment that is performed before the sports event. This type of massage will help your body feel awake and alert as opposed to relaxed and sleepy. It’s mainly focused on the parts of the athlete’s body that will be the most intensively involved in the event.
This is performed following the event and its aim is to return your body to its normal state. It helps your body recover in the shortest time possible.
From a sporting perspective the massage can be useful both pre-performance, to enable the athlete to achieve their maximum potential on the day of an event, and post performance, to enable the athlete to recover as quickly and efficiently as possible.
The primary benefit of a sports massage is to help reduce the tension and stress which accumulates in your muscles during training. They also help to enhance performance, aid in recovery and prevent injury.
Other benefits include;
– Improves Range of Movement (ROM)
– Helps aid relaxation
– Improve blood flow to the injured area to enhance recovery
– Helps with depression
– Reduces Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness (DOMS)
– Improves overall flexibility and reduces muscle tension
– Reduces and breaks down scar tissue
– Controls/reduces pain
– Improves sleep quality
– Boosts immune system
Sports massages use a higher level of pressure compared to other massage techniques. Therefore, some patients experience a small level of discomfort. The more tense your muscles are at the time of massage, the more discomfort may be experienced. This is because the muscles cannot be stretched as easily without higher levels of pressure being applied. The therapist may use their elbows or body weight to ensure the manipulation is successful.
It is also completely normal for your muscles to ache or be sore for a couple of days after. This type of massage is similar to a body workout so muscles that aren’t used as regularly in your sporting event may also ache. If you have any questions about this then please ask!
We typically recommend a 24 hour recovery period after a full body sports massage. There are a number of reasons you should do this to ensure the massage is as effective as possible and your performance is not affected.
After a massage it is important to rehydrate. A sports massage will increase the circulation of blood which, in turn, makes your body use water faster. Drinking plenty of water to replenish this is important in the next 24 hours before you carry out any training or event.
You may also experience delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS). This is a common effect from sports massages particularly for patients that do not regularly have massages. A short rest period can help to manage this soreness and aid recovery.
If you want to carry out some form of training then a light exercise such as jogging may work well compared to weight training. This will of course be dependant on your event and training schedule. Our therapists can help you with this aspect of your training and recovery.
We have an amazing team who will be able to tailor your massage and treatment specifically to you and your needs. Awarded “Best Physiotherapy & Well-Being Clinic in Bristol” for 2021, Comfort Health gained this award due to our therapist’s ability to “go over and above for your clients” and our “personal nature”.