Sports Massage and the Athlete

Sports massage has been gaining popularity over the years because athletes and trainers alike are noticing the many benefits; to not only enhance sports performance, but to also prevent injury and to facilitate the rebuilding phase of conditioning. Sports massage now plays a major role in the Commonwealth and Olympic games.

Whether you are a runner or a swimmer, you can benefit from regular sports massages. Overly exercised muscles can lose their capacity to relax, causing tight or hypertonic muscles, as well as can reduce your overall flexibility. Experts suggest that when muscles are tense, they are deprived of oxygen. This in turn, causes a decrease in circulation to the area. Sports massage improves blood and lymph circulation, relaxes the muscles, reduces pain and increases flexibility.

Sports Massage as Part of Your Conditioning Program

Incorporating sports massage in your conditioning program has many benefits. It helps you get into shape much quicker, and often with less associated stiffness and soreness. Sports massage will also help you recover faster from intensive workouts by assisting in the elimination of lactic acid build-up in the muscles.

Sports Massage as Prevention

At Everest Therapeutics, your massage therapist may target specific muscle groups used in your particular sport activity. While swimming utilizes almost all of the muscles in the body, areas of greater stress for competitive swimmers can most likely affect the upper body. These areas are more likely to be tighter and less flexible and more prone to injury. Although swimming is considered a low injury sport, it is possible to develop what is known as swimmer’s shoulder, which is ultimately related, to overuse.

Swimming, Muscle Cramps and Massage Therapy

Experts suggest that athletes are more likely to get cramps when their body is not conditioned. Cramps often develop near the end of intensive, continuous exercise. For some people, muscle cramps or muscle spasms can occur while exercising, particularly because of overexertion or over training. Over training occurs when the body is not allowed to recover adequately between periods of intensive exercise. Overexertion occurs when normal sensations of pain and fatigue are ignored. Exercise-related muscle cramps are a common ailment for athletes, particularly swimmers, especially in the legs and feet.

While muscle cramps can be caused by poor electrolyte balance such as low potassium, calcium, or sodium, they can also be caused by Myofascial trigger points. In this case, sports massage and stretching can be of great benefit. Although most muscle cramps are benign, sometimes they can indicate a serious medical condition. It is always advisable to consult with a physician.

Massage Therapy Benefits

Massage therapy is one of the most effective therapies for releasing muscle tension and restoring balance to the musculoskeletal system. For a swimmer, one of the main benefits of massage is to alleviate the stress and tension, which builds up in the body’s soft tissues during strenuous physical activity. Registered Massage Therapists (RMT) at Everest Therapeutics are trained in the assessment and treatment of the soft tissues of the body. Your RMT can help you maximize your sports performance and keep you healthy and injury free.

Vancouver Massage Therapy

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