Sports massage generally involves deep soft tissue work to reduce muscle soreness (DOMS) and adhesions (micro tears). Not just for elite or professional athletes, it is beneficial for anyone who exercises regularly. If your goal is to increase your performance, minimise the chances of injury or reduce recovery time from an existing injury, then you will benefit from sports massage.
A General Muscular Screening (GMS) is performed to assess the body's functional limitations and range of motion and incorporates relevant tests. A specific treatment plan is then developed to decide the most effective method of treatment.
Sports Massage may incorporate the following techniques -
- NMT - Neuromuscular Technique - to deactivate Trigger Points
- CFF - Cross Fibre Friction - to help heal torn muscles or scar tissue
- PNF - Proprioreceiptive Neuromuscular Facilitation - increase flexibility and range of motion
- Petrissage & tapotement – stimulate the nervous system
- Acupressure - clear meridians of blockages
- Moxibustion - stimulate blood flow
- Reflexology - promote natural functioning of related area of the body
Why should I have a sports massage?
Maintenance sports massage helps you increase performance, aid recovery and prevent injury.
Other research based benefits include –
- Warm and mobilise the joints pre event or training session
- Optimise your fitness performance
- Pre-Event helps warm and mobilise muscles and joints
- Post Event helps lower the intensity of DOMS
- Balance the central nervous system's brain, spinal column & nerves
- Deactivate trigger points
- Improve lymphatic circulation & blood flow
- Decrease stress hormones
- Improve sleep patterns, increase endorphins and serotonin levels
- Enhance immune system repair
- Decrease imbalance in hypertonic muscles
- Decrease spasms or contractions
- Improve muscle tone & muscle suppleness
- Enhance outcomes using breath work, affirmations, mindfulness and visualisation
When should I have a sports massage?
Studies found even as little as a 10 minute Swedish massage after exercise can abate inflammation and help your body recover post exercise. Sports massage is effective before and after an event but the real benefits is when sports massage becomes part of your maintenance routine in order to increase performance, aid recovery and prevent injury.
Precautions should be taken for –
- Fractures or open wounds
- Acute phase of injury (1-3 days)
- Inflammation - phlebitis (vein), dermatitis (skin), arthritis (joints)
- Severe osteoporosis
- Blood Vessel damage – varicose veins, phlebitis, thrombosis
- Infection and fever