Massage therapy has been used for a long period of time as a form of alternative medicine and a way to promote one’s health and well being. Athletes receive enormous benefit from massage therapy and use the benefits to make them better and more versatile. Many therapists in London offer deep tissue massage and I often have my sports massage in Stockwell
BENEFITS OF MASSAGE TO ATHLETES
MASSAGE THERAPY INCREASES FLEXIBILITY OF ATHLETES TO BOOST PERFORMANCE
Most Athletes usually overtrain and this causes muscle rigidity. Massage therefore helps relax tensed muscles and gives additional flexibility to improve performance. If an athlete gains more flexibility due to massage therapy, then he will have an edge over his competitors. The reason is massage therapy stretches the fibers of the muscle to maintain and promote flexibility.
MASSAGE THERAPY INCREASES BLOOD CIRCULATION AND REMOVAL OF WASTE PRODUCTS
Flow of blood into muscles is necessary to increase stamina, strength and creating new tissue. Massage increases the transportation of blood for the muscles to receive additional oxygen and nutrients. Massage dilates the muscles of athletes which is vital for flushing out toxins such as lactic acid and uric acid that can lead to swelling and muscle soreness.
MASSAGE THERAPY REDUCES PAIN AND SHORTENS RECOVERY TIME OF ATHLETES
When a muscle of an athlete is pushed too hard, muscle spasms can occur. Massage helps to relax muscle spasms and alleviate tension, while also provides natural recovery to the body of the athletes. When the muscles of athletes are overworked, they feel pain which is not healthy. Massage increases the flow of blood and lymph, thereby speeding the injury recovery process.
MASSAGE THERAPY BENEFITS THE ATHLETE PSYCHOLOGICALLY
Psychology and sports has many relations. The body is only as strong when the mind is strong, so an athlete who has a strong mind that is focused and relaxed has an advantage in highly competitive sports activities. An athlete who is stressed is not nearly as capable as one with a very clear mind.
THE BEST MASSAGE THERAPIES FOR ATHLETES
ACTIVE RELEASE TECHNIQUE
Active Release Technique, popularly referred to as A.R.T., is a massage method that puts together movement with particular, deep pressure to reduce scar tissue buildup and alleviate muscle adhesions. Active release is best for treating a particular injury, especially where the formation of scar tissue has an effect on the body’s ability to heal itself.
The Swedish massage uses long strokes of different pressure, which is light to increase blood transportation and alleviate muscle tension. This type of massage is good for days prior to very big sports activities.
DEEP TISSUE MASSAGE
Deep tissue massage focus on both the deep and superficial muscles layers. This type of massage is usually intense because it is more of a focused, deliberate work. Deep tissue massage is often used during training sessions which are hard and difficult.
HOW OFTEN AN ATHLETE SHOULD GET A MASSAGE AND REASONS
An athlete will prevent frequent injuries by receiving a massage weekly or monthly by catching tight muscle. An athlete can decide to get either one or two massage sessions during his hardest training block.
It is always recommended that athletes receive massage therapy the evening after a difficult workout or the next morning following the work out. If the massage therapist is using methods like Active Release Therapy, the muscles usually get sore. Giving the massage very close to the last hard work allows the body a enough time to recover.