WHAT IS SPORTS MASSAGE?
Sports massage is a specific application of massage therapy and related techniques to maintain the health of an athlete and to enhance athletic performance. The treatment is can be performed without massage oils or cream, can be done over clothing and uses specific techniques (positional release, trigger point therapy, lymphatic drainage, and myofascial release) and stretches to promote tissue health and recovery.
SOME BENEFITS ARE:
Optimizes muscle performance in athletes
Increases the health of muscle and connective tissues
Increases range of motion,
Creates a mental clarity, calmness, and concentration for the athlete, which in turn enhances their athletic abilities.
Decreases injury potentials due to physical activity.
Prevents acute and chronic injuries from occurring and supports soft tissue healing.
WHAT TYPES OF CONDITIONS CAN IT HELP TO TREAT?
Decrease Post-Exercise Muscle Soreness
Edema (abnormal accumulation of fluid in tissue a.k.a. swelling)
Rotator Cuff Syndrome
Before and After Surgery
WHEN SHOULD I HAVE ONE?
Sports massage can be performed as a Pre-Event, Inter-Event, Post-Event or Maintenance treatment. Pre, Inter and Post massages are usually performed onsite during a sporting event or game.Maintenance massage should be done during training or in between events to maintain an athlete’s physical condition, address problem areas, and enhance muscle recovery. How often a client should receive massage depends on that client’s individual needs, training goals, and level of activity.
At 4 Elements Healing Massage, a “general guideline” for scheduling a maintenance sports massage should be:
Once or twice a week OR bi-weekly
60 to 90-minute sessions
Areas of stress and tension should be addressed
The therapist should use a full range of massage techniques and stretches
To find out when Sports Massage SHOULD NOT be performed, click here.
WHAT IS AIS?
AIS can be an important part of warm-up, cool-down, training or rehabilitation. A specific muscle group is identified by the massage therapist. The client will be asked to actively use (or contract) that muscle while the therapist applies a gentle stretch. This motion can be performed multiple times on the target muscle. The client will notice an increase in the range of motion as AIS is performed.
SOME BENEFITS ARE:
Improves oxygenation and nutrition of muscle tissue
Stimulates circulation and drainage of lymph, the fluid in your lymphatic system, which helps to eliminate metabolic wastes produced by muscle movements and massage therapy
Improves flexibility and health of muscles, tendons, and ligaments
Breaks down adhesions that may form from trauma or inflammation
Realigns collagen fibers
Reduces muscle spasms
WHY USE THIS TECHNIQUE IN CONJUNCTION WITH A SPORTS MASSAGE TREATMENT?
Athletes reach their “peak performance” sooner and sustain it longer
Muscles respond more quickly and powerfully
Performance is improved with reduced chance of injury
Muscle stiffness is reduced as excess lactic acid build up is removed from the muscular tissue.
Tissues heal quicker after intense workouts and athletic events
Herniated discs or back injuries are a major concern when performing ANY type of stretching, period. Injuries to the head (such as whiplash) and joints, especially shoulder, knee, and ankle should be taken into consideration when performing AIS techniques.