Massage Therapy - Not Just For Athletes
It's a common misconception that the use of deep tissue massage is just for athletes but this statement can't be further from the truth.
Massage therapy dates back to 400 BC and numerous forms and techniques have been developed throughout the years all claiming to have numerous benefits for both mind and body. Massage therapy has recently received strong clinical support for reducing pain, increasing alertness, diminishing depression, and enhancing immune function within patients. The benefits of massage therapy are almost endless and for this reason an increased number of people are turning to massage to improve both their physical and mental well being. It can often be confusing to understand the varying types of massage techniques and picking the best one for you. Therapists are often trained in various types of massage allowing them to select the most efficient treatment for the clients needs.
Remedial massage aims treat musculoskeletal conditions such as back pain, stiff neck and shoulders and injuries that concern muscular damage. Remedial massage aims to increase blood flow and oxygen to the treated areas and can also be used in support of other therapies to assist in the rehabilitation of muscular injuries. The pressure applied during treatment can range from strong and deep or gentle and shallow, depending on the problem. Remedial massage can make joints more mobile and help to repair damaged tissues. The therapist will aim to balance the length, tone and tension of muscles and tendons, which restores the correct position of the bones, increases blood flow and helps heal injuries.
Sports massage is normally aimed towards athletes of varying levels from amateur to pro players. The main aim of sports massage is to aid recovery of damaged muscles that have experienced high levels of micro trauma during performance. Sports massage is also designed to assist in correcting problems and imbalances in soft tissue that are caused from repetitive and strenuous physical activity and trauma. The application of sports massage, prior to and after exercise, may enhance performance, aid recovery and prevent injury of the athlete. Sports massage can be applied to various age groups and can be effective for athletes of all skill levels.
Deep Tissue Massage
Deep tissue massage is a type of massage technique that is aimed at the deeper tissue structures of the muscle and fascia. The term is often used to distance a sports / physio therapist from a regular massage therapist. Getting through the layers of muscle is more subtle than you might imagine and requires persistence as well as firm pressure. Just digging in demonstrates inexperience or a lack of training. Many people like a deep massage as the pain produces large amounts of endorphins (the body’s own painkiller) that gives a natural high. However, the misuse of deep tissue massage can cause the muscle to react badly causing more tightness than before. The correct dosage and type of treatment will be determined dependent on the clients health and issue they are facing.
Trigger Point Therapy
A Trigger Point is a palpable nodule in the taut bands of the skeletal muscles' fascia. Direct compression can elicit slight pain, local tenderness, local twitch response and referred pain to other areas of the body. Those weird knots or cricks that just show up out of nowhere in your neck, shoulders or back can be described as potential trigger points that a therapist can release them via massage. When released pain relief is often described along with a greater function of the treated area.
Is Massage Therapy Right For Me?
Due to the various different forms of massage therapy it can be beneficial for all types of people if the correct technique is applied. Massage can be applied to clients of varying age and athletic ability making the therapy and it's multiple benefits available for everyone. Understanding what you aim to achieve through massage is key when selecting and talking to a therapist about treatment. A therapist will be able to guide you to the correct treatment ensuring that the aims and goals of the treatment are achieved efficiently.