While sports massage is essential for performance sports, it isn’t just for athletes. Anyone with an active lifestyle can benefit. A combination of deep tissue and assisted stretching, sports massage helps to prepare for an activity, decrease post-event muscle soreness, improve flexibility, and increase range-of-motion.
A good pre-event sports massage addresses issues that may hamper performance, without over-relaxing the muscles.
Sports massage techniques can help increase muscle efficiency and flexibility by combining massage techniques and incorporating assisted stretching.
Sports massage has reduces delayed-onset muscle soreness (DOMS) - the soreness you may feel 24-48 hours after an intense workout.
Muscle stripping is a more intense technique and is generally used on targeted, more densely-muscled areas. Your sports massage therapist will use deep, strong, slow pressure, along the muscle fibers. They will check in with you regarding the intensity and adjust the pressure as needed. The goal is to increase range-of-motion and elasticity.
Sports massage therapists use transverse friction to break down scar tissue or keep it from forming. It is also used to break down adhesions. The therapist traps the tissue against the bone and moves their hands perpendicular to those fibers. Reducing scar tissue results in increased range-of-motion and efficient movement.
Compression is often used at the beginning of a sports massage as an evaluation tool and a muscle warm-up. The therapist will usually keep one hand stationary while pressing the other into the muscle; it’s usually used on large surfaces, like legs or back. Rhythmic compression helps soft tissue relax.
In PNF (proprioceptive neuromuscular facilitation) the sports massage therapist uses assisted stretching, in conjunction with isometrics. The therapist evaluate and assist the recipient through a series of stretches and movements. PNF helps decrease muscle tension while increasing mobility. It also increases awareness of unique body patterns.
Massage therapists love feedback! Be sure to keep an open line of communication with your therapist. If you have areas that need attention, or that you prefer to avoid, or if you want lighter or deeper pressure, speak right up.
LOVE Zeel! Had many different massage therapists and all were great for sports massage. Cannot beat them coming to your home.Brian T.
I'm a runner... Always look forward to my monthly deep tissue and/or sports massage.Rick M.
I was skeptical about an app for massage but was not feeling well and couldn’t get a last minute appointment near my house so I took a chance. What a wonderful surprise - it was fantastic!Renee A.