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The Three Main Benefits of Sports Massage

By Mark Ransom

Sports massage can play an important part to any athlete’s life. It does not matter whether you are injured or not; it can deeply affect your body physically, physiologically, and psychologically. Here are a few benefits of sports massage you can take advantage of today.

To start with, let’s go over some of the physical benefits of sports massage. The first benefit is pumping, which is the stroking movements during the massage that suck fluid through blood vessels. By increasing the pressure in front of the stroke, it can loosen tight or damaged muscle tissue.

Next, a deep massage can stretch tissues that could not be stretched in the usual methods. All of the bundles of muscle fibers are stretched lengthwise as well as sideways. In addition, it can also stretch the sheath or fascia that surrounds the muscle thus releasing any built up pressure or tension.

As mentioned, you do not have to be injured to take advantage of the benefits of sports massage. Hard training can cause tissues to harden and become inelastic. Getting a sports massage can help reverse this by stretching the tissues and improve your overall tissue elasticity.

Now to the physiological benefits of sports massage, you will experience pain reduction. Tension and waste products in muscles can often cause pain. A quality massage can help reduce this in many ways. One of these ways includes releasing the body’s endorphins.

Another physiological benefit of sports massage is relaxation. Muscles relax through heat generated, circulation and stretching. Mechanoreceptors, which can sense touch, pressure, tissue length and warmth, are stimulated causing a reflex relaxation.

As for the psychological benefits of sports massage, there is a great deal of anxiety reduction. Through the effects mentioned thus far, relaxation is induced thus reducing anxiety levels.

Lastly, if a massage is done with brisk movements like what is done during an exercise, this can help produce an invigorating feeling. It helps you become used to the movements so that you experience far less tension and pressure during the actual activity.

There are numerous benefits of sports massage that you can take advantage of whether you are injured or not. A basic massage can help you physically, physiologically and psychologically. This article goes over just some of the many ways you can benefit from a deep sports massage. Take the time to find a masseuse that can treat you before and after various activities.

Giving a great massage doesn’t have to be confusing. Visit my Massage Benefits blog to learn how you can give a fantastic massage anytime.

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Massage Therapy, Fitness and Optimal Performance

By Jodi Forsythe

Massage therapy is often used as an adjunct to a fitness routine to assist in achieving peak athletic performance. There are a variety of ways in which massage therapy is used to promote optimal fitness – massage therapy is not all just about spas and “fluff”. Massage can be used to increase the suppleness of muscle, aid in recovery after exertion, assist in fluid removal in the presence of injury or inflammation (from non-infectious origins) or control pain through the release of endorphins.

Massage therapy affects muscles in 2 ways: mechanically and chemically. Mechanically, it is the kneading, stretching and compression of the tissue which stimulates the smooth muscle of the blood vessels and increases blood flow to and from the area. (due to an increase in histamine – see below). Manual manipulation of the tissue will also literally break adhesions and scar tissue, regardless of whether techniques are applied with or against the muscle fibre. This decrease in inelastic scar tissue will allow muscles to contract and elongate as they should, and will increase muscle performance.

At a chemical level, massage therapy can cause the release of “endorphins”, neurotransmitters that reduce the perception of pain, and increase a feeling of wellbeing. Increased permeability of the blood vessels is caused by release of histamine in response to mechanical stimulation – this increase in blood flow leads to “hyperemia”, redness which is often visible after a massage.

The application of therapeutic massage plays a role in event preparation as well as recovery and maintenance, though the goals and application will be different depending on the timing of the treatment in relation to the activity.

Pre-event, the purpose of massage is to “wake-up” and warm-up the muscles, ensuring that they are ready for physical demands to be placed on them. During a pre-event treatment, the movements of the therapist are quick, stimulating the nerves in the area and increasing the ability of a muscle to react to stimuli. Circulation to the muscle is also increased and with it oxygen delivery to the muscle cells, causing a subsequent increase in cellular metabolism and improved functionality. Increased blood flow also warms up the muscle, allowing for greater pre-event stretching, imperative to optimizing performance and reducing injury due to muscle strain.

Post-event massage is much slower, encouraging the body to relax after exertion. Massage therapy at this stage is utilized to assist the body in removing metabolic waste, relaxing and stretching the fatigued muscle. This is done by increasing the circulation and pliability of the muscle tissue. The increased removal of metabolic waste such as lactic acid will decrease recovery time and soreness in the days following an event.

Massage therapy used as a maintenance tool will assist an athlete in maintaining optimal muscle health. During maintenance treatments, the therapist will assess the condition of tissue and establish a treatment plan in conjunction with the goals and condition of the client. It is during these treatments that muscle imbalances are often identified; adhesions and scar tissue are broken down (thus increasing muscle functionality) via manipulation, stretching and breaking down of tissue. Circulation is increased, assisting in oxygen delivery and metabolic waste removal.

Regardless of fitness level, massage therapy can help a fitness enthusiast or athlete achieve his or her performance goals by promoting and maintaining muscle health.

Jodi Forsythe has been a Registered Massage Therapist since graduating from a 2200-hour massage therapy program at ICT Northumberland College in Nova Scotia, Canada, in the year 2000. She created WhyMassageTherapy.com as an online resource for all things concerning massage therapy.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Jodi_Forsythe

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The Benefits of Sports Event Massage

By Lorna Finlay

First of all, you need to remember that there are basically 3 types of sports massages. There is the sports event massage, sports maintenance massage, and sports treatment massage. Each type of massage offers specific massage but every type of these massages can help reduce the risk of injury. It will help in improving recovery time for sporting related injuries as well as increase blood circulation.

As an athlete, the three types of sports massages are very important. You may want to know about the sports event massage first.

Just what is the event massage?

First of all, you need to keep in mind that the sports event massage can be broken into sub-categories, which are the pre-event, inter-event and the post-event. For the pre event massage, it will help you prepare for the upcoming physical exertion. Basically, this massage will help condition your entire body for the upcoming strenuous sporting activity. Consider this as part of your warm up.

For the inter-event massage, it will basically take place during the event. It will be given in between the event or when you take breaks. This is very important for athletes who may be entered into multiple events. This particular massage will help in keeping the muscles relaxed and ready. It will help avoid cramping.

The post-event massage will help your muscles recover from the recent physical exertion. This is basically done right after the strenuous activity. Generally, the massage here targets tight muscles and helps it relax. It will target injured muscles in order for it to heal much faster.

The event massages basically targets the large muscle groups and is done in the muscle groups that will be majorly used during the sporting event. This will also be short in duration, which is usually 10 to 15 minutes and is fast paced.

The important thing about sports event massage is that it will help in reducing the risk of injuries. Because the massage prepares the muscles or warms it up, it will be able to loosen tight muscles, which is usually the cause of sporting injuries. It will make the muscles more flexible, which will be able to prevent torn muscles and pulled muscles.

It will help in increasing the blood circulation in the muscles, which is essential in giving the muscles energy. As an athlete, you will definitely want this kind of benefit. It is very relaxing and will keep your mind in a positive state and help you concentrate.

If you are an athlete and you can afford to hire a massage therapist, then you may want to request the event massages. With this massage, you can be sure that you will be able to minimize the risk of sports related injuries as well as keep your mind in a relaxed and positive state.

Visit my website to find out more about massage therapy.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Lorna_Finlay

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