Beneficial for everyone, sports massage therapy is a systematic manipulation of the soft tissues of the body that focuses on muscles both in general and when relevant for a particular sport.
Numerous different movements and techniques are used in sports massage. These movements and techniques are used to try and help the athlete’s body achieve maximum performance and physical conditioning with a decreased chance of injury or pain and a quicker recovery.
Benefits of Sports Massage
Many benefits from sports massage have been reported based on experience and observation, some 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 massage, but for the most part, sports massage is safe.
Some of the reported benefits include:
- Increased blood flow
- Increased joint range of motion
- Increased flexibility/boost performance
- Increased elimination of exercise waste products (lactic acid)
- Increased sense of well-being/maintain better condition of the body
- Decreased muscle tension
- Decreased neurological excitability (nerves more relaxed)
- Decreased chance of injury
- Decreased recovery time between workouts & training
- Decreased muscle spasms
Research studies have also shown that sports massage made subjects feel less fatigued and felt like they recovered faster after a sports massage, decreased anxiety, improved mood & well being were also noted. Delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS) decreased by about 30% in one research study, whilst also showing that sports massage can assist in eliminating lactic acid.