WHEN DO ATHLETES NEED MASSAGE AND BODYWORK?
We often tend to do more routine maintenance and care on our cars than our bodies! Here are some ideas for a good maintenance program that will help assure the best performance and quickest recovery of your hard working muscles!!
Ideally, athletes should get a tough, deep massage three days to a week before a race or big event. Another massage is good the day before or the morning of the event, but this one should be focused on stretching and isometric approaches like Thai Yoga Stretching Massage, concentrating on breathing and relaxing while the therapist stretches your muscles.
Right after the event is another great time for a massage! This one, however, should be less vigorous, focusing on calming and flushing your tight muscles. Painful muscles should be iced for a few days, and if nothing is injured then this is the perfect time for more deep tissue work, including myofascial release.
From any type of massage you can expect the benefits of blood and oxygen flowing through the body, breaking up adhesions in the muscles and fascia, and flushing out toxins and waste products from all of the energy burned.
In active training it is generally recommended to receive massage and bodywork twice a month if time and money allows.
It is important for anyone and everyone to be proactive and quick to recognize and get help for any pain or discomfort in the body!! Understanding the causes of your discomfort is an essential part of optimal performance, as well as for everyday comfort. Back, shoulder, and neck pain, tightness of thigh muscles, shin splints, and sciatic pain, to name a few, are issues that should be addressed regularly and immediately with both structural (chiropractic) and soft tissue (massage therapy) modalities.
By Scott Anderson, CMT, NMRT