Losing weight and working out is at the top of everyone’s New Year’s resolutions, isn’t it? You can hit the gym hard the first couple of weeks if you’d like, but you’ll soon find after the second day of power lifting or a strenuous exercise class, that you can’t walk the next day. You may even experience Delayed Onset Soreness (DOS) which can feel like a cramp in your muscles days after the workout. Going headfirst into the gym after a year of complacency invites injury and unnecessary soreness. A set sports massage therapy regimen to coincide with your workout schedule will help you keep your resolution comfortably for months to come.
What is sports massage? Sports massage is the specific application of massage techniques, hydrotherapy protocols, range of motion/flexibility protocol and strength-training principles utilized to achieve a specific goal when treating an athlete (massagetoday.com).
There are three basics to how a therapist approaches sports massage, giving you the most comfortable and effective massage. First, there’s the ‘When’; is this massage before your workout, or after? Is this a treatment or a preventative? The specific strokes pressure, and range of motion will aid in recovery, or increase flexibility, improve range of motion, and strength; which leads us to the next question….
Next, the therapist will ask ‘What’, as in what type of technique is necessary for the need? If the need is a post-workout massage, or if the athlete is injured, the therapy is applied accordingly. There are specific techniques such as effleurage, friction, petrrisage, cross-fiber friction, among many others. The therapist will use the appropriate technique after identifying the need of the client.
Lastly, the therapist must ask ‘Why’? What is the end result the client wants to achieve? What do you want to get out of your sports massage therapy? Do you want leaner muscles, do you need to relax after intense training, or are you prone to injury and need to strengthen your muscles before actually starting your workout regimen? Knowing why is helpful for both you and your therapist.
Make your appointment today by giving us a call, or stop by our center to speak to one of our therapists about your fitness goals in 2016. We will discuss your health history, your history with injuries, and what you ultimately want to achieve by the end of this year. We will support you all along the way, and make sure you keep the resolution you’ve worked hard to achieve all year long!