Massage has been used for hundreds of years as a way to promote health and well being. Some think of it as a kind of alternative medicine, although it’s mainly thought of as something to help us relax. However, there are many more benefits to massage than you probably realise; especially when it comes to benefits of sports massage and athletes.
Sports massage can make athletes more versatile and better at what they do in general! Read on for a deeper look at these benefits.
Massage actually affects the cardiovascular system. It helps to dilate blood vessels, which encourages them to work more efficiently. Fresh oxygen and nutrients are delivered to the tissue, and removal of waste products and toxins are encouraged.
Your heart rate also lowers right after receiving a massage. It is more commonly know that massage benefits the muscular system, helping to ease tension, reduce soreness, and make a faster recovery.
Not only does massage feel good, it is actually good for your muscles, helping to build them and repair them. But specifically, what are the benefits of getting a weekly sports massage?
Benefits of sports massage for performance enhancement
Focusing on the massage aspect of the ritual, the scientific manipulation of soft tissues of the body is known to enhance performance. The systematic kneading and rubbing focused on specific muscles to be used for a particular sport is one way of priming the muscles for optimal function.
But what really are the important benefits athletes get from sports massage? Research reveals that as far as performance goes, it can increase the joints’ range of motion, making movement less stressful and easier to execute. Plus, it can promote better flexibility to prevent injuries while performing extremely challenging moves.
Likewise, sports massage is known to decrease recovery time between workouts because it serves as a cure as well; athletes can have back-to-back games yet be able to deliver the same quality performance because massage promoted quick recovery for the muscles and soft tissues of the body.
Sports massage increase flexibility
London fitness experts claim that a lot of athletes have a similar ritual (with the addition of certain superstitious practices they believe will help them with their game) because it truly is a great way to prepare the body to increase its flexibility.
In order for an athlete to work to their full potential, they need to be very flexible. It doesn’t matter which sport the athlete is involved in; the more flexibility they have, the bigger advantage they’ll have over your competitors. Since massage therapy stretches the muscle fibres, flexibility is promoted and easily maintained with regular sports massage.
Massage improved blood circulation and release toxins
Blood circulation is important for many reasons, but when it comes to sport, it means an athlete can breathe much easier and move better. Performance levels will soar thanks to the improved blood flow. Now, with regards to overall health, sports massage can aid in the removal of toxins in the body. Actually, most massages do this, but there is a specific technique used in this type of massage that can help people void more easily and regularly. Regular bowel movement can be a problem for some athletes (and other people) who tend to have erratic schedules, and colon health may be compromised because of this.
However, expert massage can help take care of the problem. And lastly, people who get this systematic massage are less prone to experiencing muscle spasms or suffering from excruciating cramps that can restrict and cause movement to be painful for some time.
In conclusion, for more energy, better endurance, quick muscle recovery, improved movements, and overall better bodily function, sports massage can definitely help. These benefits of sports massage have been proven by scientific research and observations. The only determined side effects of getting this massage are soreness of the muscles after the session and some sleepiness because of how relaxed the body tends to become, but all in all, it yields positive results that benefit those who receive it.
Sports massage for pain relief
Think about it; if an athlete is in pain due to an injury, they aren’t going to do their best. With regular sports massage, muscle aches and pains can improve, and the athlete can do a much better job.
A deeper, better quality sleep
Sports Massage is a wonderful help when it comes to sleeping. Sometimes it doesn’t matter if you have hours and hours of sleep; if the sleep you get isn’t quality, then you aren’t going to feel great. With a deep, quality sleep, any athlete will be able to perform to a superior level.
Increased relaxation levels and less Stress
A lot of athletes find it a real struggle to relax and get some down time, and stress takes a big toll on their health. Massages not only improve sports performance, but everyday life with increased relaxation and less stress. Also, when a person gets a sports massage, their body releases endorphins, which help to relieve pain and make us happier.
Sports massage help DOMS prevention
Have you ever experienced delayed onset muscle soreness, otherwise referred to as DOMS? Well, it isn’t pretty, but a sports massage can prevent this. Muscle fatigue is prevented due to encouraging blood and lymph flow throughout the body.
You may have noticed that psychological effects were mentioned too. Well, athleticism doesn’t rely totally on physical performance; you need to be tactical and focused too. In order to complete something like a race or bike ride to your full potential, you need to be stress free, relaxed, and happy. Massage helps with all of those things!
If you think sports massage is expensive…you never had a good one
Must it be a sports massage?
There are different kinds of massage, from sports to aromatherapy. So, does an athlete have to get a sports massage like those offered by Massaggi, or can they pick and choose? Well, you’ll benefit much more as an athlete from a deep tissue or sports massage than a soft, gentle, aromatherapy massage. However, a sports/deep tissue massage isn’t always comfortable.
Depending on the sport you’re involved in, a sports massage is often fast and includes stretching and similar approaches. It can be tailored to suit you, whether you’re being treated before your performance, or afterwards. A sports massage is specifically designed to undo any knots and reduce tension, so you shouldn’t expect to go to sleep during this massage.
When should you book your sports massage?
A massage every now and again might be a nice treat, but they won’t be as effective as a regular massage program. Just like exercise or practicing your sport, you’ll only get amazing results with consistency. The more regularly you’re massaged, the more you’ll reap the benefits listed in this post!
It’s like a preventive maintenance in a way. Every other week should be the minimum you book your massage slots if you want to see awesome results in your performance, physique, and well being.
If you want to book a massage before certain event, then you should do it about 3-5 days before the event. If you can schedule the massage on a rest day, then that’s even better. You might leave the massage bed feeling sore as if you’ve done a tough workout, so it’s important to be prepared.
Book a massage after an event; wait for 3-5 days, as this means any lingering soreness will hopefully ease off.
Both pros and amateurs can benefit from this treatment, especially if looking to improve body conditioning and performance. You might need to sort out your finances in order to support your regular massage program, but it’ll be worth it.
To further support your performance and massage program, don’t forget to eat to meet your goals and drink plenty of water. At least 2 litres per day is recommended, along with another litre for every hour of strenuous exercise performed afterwards.
The best way to find an amazing therapist is to make sure they’re qualified, fully insured and experienced. Ask other people involved in your sport if they can give you any recommendations. Sports massages should be considered an essential part of your training regime; even non athletes can reap benefits from this kind of treatment. Go ahead and book your sports massage now to become a better athlete/person overall!
5 Benefits Of Sports Massage Therapy From An Athletes
When you strive to be the best your body has to collaborate and be on the same wave length with our dreams.
However, because of the world we have created for ourselves such as the chairs we sit on, the shoes we wear, the desk we work at, our bodies suffer and lose the capacity to go beyond their limits. And if we do attempt to push them, we break them, sometimes literally. Then it’s GAME OVER.
There are, however, ways we can aid our bodies to be and stay strong, comfortable and ready to push the boundaries of human potential.
Do my mother massages count?
I’ve been training and competing since the age of 8 (now I’m 28), and before last year I never had a sports massage (do my mother massages count?).
Last year I finally understood why in the past 5 years my performance slowly went down, I kept getting injured more often and last for longer, my body was becoming difficult to manage at a high level of performance.
Based on my experience training hard and pushing boundaries can only be achieved if all elements of your body flawlessly connect and work together as a whole.
What are the benefits of sports massage for Athletes
1. Better and more fluid movement
In almost any sport how fluid your body moves is critical. If it’s stiff and tight then movement will be slow, difficult, painful and unnatural. Performance will be low. Sports massage techniques gives the body more freedom of movement with less risk of sports injuries. Sounds good right? It improves balance, flexibility, mobility, speed and strength all by releasing those tensions placed on your body every day and every training session. This is freedom of movement.
2. Increased endurance
Endurance is not only from a cardiovascular point of view but your joints have to hold when you run through rivers, lakes, jump and land on and off high platforms, jump in and out of ditches and so on. No matter how much you train your lungs, if you ankles give up in the middle of the race or tournament you either need to stop or continue and risk a long term injury and then no more competing.
Joints, ligaments and tendons as well as muscle fibres need to be prepared for impact and have to keep up with this pressure for hours at once.
Sports remedial massage therapy give your body a strong foundation on which movement can take place at lower risks.
3. Faster recovery from sports injuries
In 20 years of competitive sport I had my share of injuries, and it’s not over yet. From my first sports massage session I noticed my old sports injuries starting to back up and new ones healing faster. With sport massage I keep injuries in check and slowly building my body to function faster, stronger but most of all smarter.
4. Recovery from training sessions
Someone wise once told me that fitness is not about how well you perform an exercise but how well and fast you recover from/after it.
Our bodies require rest to recover. And resting means relaxing the body and allowing it to heal. However, if our bodies are tensed and tight recovery will be much slower. So one of the many benefits of sports massage therapy (reduce stress) is the fact that it releases tensions and pressures around the body, muscles, joints, tendons, ligaments , everywhere we need to recover for the next session.
5. Benefits of sports massage for better sleep
This is a very important and often overlooked element in every in my opinion. Everyone sleeps but how many of us have a good sleep to wake up refreshed and ready to start the day right away? Not many. Sleeping is the only time when our bodies naturally heals. Sports massage gave me just this. With a more relaxed body my mind could relax as well, I could let go of physical and mental stress and give my body the chance to heal. I sleep better and wake up with more energy ready to start my day.
A complete athlete is not the one who trains hard all the time, who pushes herself until the body breaks down. A complete athlete acknowledges, manages and uses her body in the most efficient way. A top athlete Trains Hard but also Trains Smart.
London health coach striving for athletic perfection
Everyone has certain motivation triggers. Personally, I have always strived for perfection. Knowing I will never reach it, not even knowing what perfection is for that matter, makes me push harder and harder. Sometimes I go too far and my body “shouts” at me. For example a weakened immune system or an injury. Then I know that I went a little bit too far. But it’s all a learning curve, we all go through it. So I want now to give you an idea of my schedule.
I am a coach, I coach women outdoors, and I focus on mental well-being. I teach top athlete Trains Hard but also Trains Smart which is based on Six Essential Principles:
- Zanshin or mindfulness
- Natural movement
- Personal development
- Habits transformation
And through it I help professional women let go of stress and overcome depression and anxiety.
I am also a competitive athlete. I hold National Titles and a 2nd world raking in Karate Shotokan. Today I compete for England at a National and International level. It’s demanding, physically but most of all mentally. On top of that I have a passion for Obstacle Course Races. And when I have a strong passion for something I have the urge to be better and better at it, even then best if possible. So my goal this year is to be part of the Wild Forest Gym Elite OCR TEAM.
And added to all this of course I am an entrepreneur, pushing boundaries in directions and on paths I never ever thought possible. Actually I never knew those paths even existed for me to take them.
I push those boundaries but I don’t do it alone but working with my business and life coach Amanda Watts, founder of Clients in Abundance and Awaken Your Magic. She is looking after me and makes sure I am on the right path all the time, no matter what.
Physical benefits of sports massage help professional athletes
How does my life actually look like… Well, it’s boring, but it’s productive and effective. I get a lot done, fast.
So here is how few of my days look like that should give you an idea of the physical stress and mental pressure and why the the psysical benefits of sports massage therapy is one of the best ways to cope with them.
Monday I coach 2 of my clients, one at 7am and another at 11am(that’s because I need to travel between locations).
When I coach my clients I do at least 50% of the session with them unless I have a bad injury. Then I do my own intense workout if the 2 were not very intense sessions. By the time I get home it’s past 3 pm. From 3 pm to 11pm I work on my business.
Tuesday is one of the most magical and most difficult days. That’s because I wake up at 4:30am to go training with my OCR coach. I get back home at 10am.
At that point I need to sleep, so I sleep 1-2 hours max. And this is the most difficult day because from noon until 10pm I sit all day working on my business.
Friday morning I train myself outdoors. Then I do business development for about 8 hours followed by a nap and a 2h30 min of Karate Training session.
And my Sensei has no hesitation pairing me with all the big and bulky guys in the Dojo for free sparring. Luckily my body has adapted so well over the 20 years of sports that although my body hurts I have no visible bruises.
Saturday is a long coaching day. My own training is incorporated within those sessions where I look at fine tuning techniques and movement.
Sunday is again a 2.5 hours Karate Day and business development as well as personal development.
Sports massage is usually squeezed somewhere in the week. As well as yoga, another Karate session and other additional, but critical, aspects of being an athlete. But my week is not the same all the time. The days I mentioned are probably the only ones that stay the same, more or less, from week to week.
All in all I believe that if I did not have the outdoors I would not be able to cope with everything as well as I do. And sports massage give my body that extra support it needs to keep going on preventing sports injuries.