Sports Massage

Sports Massage is a special form of massage and is typically used before, during, and after athletic events. The purpose of the massage is to prepare the athlete for peak performance, to drain away fatigue, to relieve swelling, to reduce muscle tension to promote flexibility and to prevent injuries.

Sports massage can help prevent those niggling injuries that so often get in the way of performance and achievement, whether a person is an athlete or a once a week jogger.

Because each sport uses muscle groups in a different way sports massage is designed to address those specific concerns and may differ according to the sport the athlete plays. Sports massage can be aimed to help heal strained muscles and allow healthy ones to reach peak performance and maintain it while minimizing the risk of injury.

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Sports massage is reported to have many beneficial effects in athletes. Sports massage can be used pre-performance, post-performance, during training or for rehabilitation. Athletes of all levels may benefit from sports massage. If you are looking for a way to improve your athletic performance, then sports massage may be for you. Learn more about the possible performance enhancing effects of sports massage. 

What is Sports Massage?

Sports massage is a systematic manipulation of the soft tissues of the body that focuses on muscles relevant to a particular sport. Runner Paavo Nurmi, known as the "Flying Finn," was one of the early users of sports massage. Nurmi is said to have used sports massage during the 1924 Olympics in Paris where he won five gold medals. In the United States, Jack Meagher is thought to be the father of sports massage in the United States.

Many different movements and techniques are used in sports massage. Examples of these techniques include; Swedish style massage, effleurage (stroking), petrissage (kneading), compression, friction, tapotement (rhythmic striking), vibration, gliding, stretching, percussion and trigger points. These movements and techniques are used to try to help the athlete's body achieve maximum performance and physical conditioning with a decreased chance of injury or pain and a quicker recovery.

What are the Benefits of Sports Massage?

Many benefits from sports massage have been reported based on experience and observation. Some of the benefits are to the mind (psychological) and some are to the body (physiological). Possible side effects of sports massage are tenderness or stiffness for 1 to 2 days after the sports massage. A skin reaction due to the massage oils is also possible. But for the most part, sports massage is safe. Some of the reported benefits include:
    • Increased blood flow
    • Increased elimination of exercise waste products (lactic acid)
    • Increased sense of well-being
    • Decreased muscle tension
    • Decreased neurological excitability (nerves more relaxed)
    • Decreased chance of injury
    • Decreased recovery time between workouts

4 comments:

  1. So much information, really well executed blog. This is really informative and I will for sure refer my friends the same. Thanks
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  2. Sport massage therapy is very important to athletes who need to have relaxation and injury related massage to help them stay in shape for the next competition.

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  3. I remember when I used to play a lot of sports when I was younger I would always have to get these. I have really bad calves and they were always cramping up. I found that it did help me feel better the next few days.

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