A background to sports massage
Before we launch into advice about how you can get the best out of sports massage, let’s start with a little background.
The evolution of the practice has happened over a huge span of time.
Massage itself is a form of therapy that dates back over 3000 years. It has its origins in China. And some would argue in India and Greece too.
The advent of sports massage dates back to the early nineteenth century. This is when Per Henrik Ling first developed it to help gymnasts and fencers.
Modern sports massage grew popular around the world, especially the Soviet Union, in the later 20th Century. But it didn’t really become mainstream in the UK until the 1990s.
All this goes to demonstrate that sports massage isn’t just some marketing fad. But rather, it’s a therapy with deep roots and a long tradition.
What does Sports Massage involve?
One of the key goals of Sports Massage is to help release and relieve tightened muscles. This has a few benefits. It can relieve soreness, help to improve joint range of motion and allow the body to perform better, among many other things.
The therapist is likely to use a variety of techniques. These may include what is known as passive or active stretching. Or they may use another very sophisticated form of stretching known by the abbreviation PNF. All fantastic for aiding flexibility.
In terms of massage techniques, they apply many different types of movement and pressure. To give a few examples, the therapist may use light strokes with the palm of the hand. Alternatively, they may use a kneading motion or perhaps a friction movement. In addition, they may cup the hands and lightly hack at the body. And finally, they may stimulate the muscles through vibration.
Although these various methods may become slightly uncomfortable, rest assured, they should not be painful. They can be used to enhance blood flow, help with muscle recovery, warm up muscles or soothe and relax them.
Basically, the technique and the effect are all carefully selected depending on where you are at in the performance cycle.
What can Sports Massage help with
It can help in a number of ways. But to name a few, it can –
- Ease muscle strain
- Help improve flexibility and mobility
- Improve posture
- Boost healing after injury
- And help prevent further injuries
Who is it for?
As the name would suggest, it is primarily for people who are active in sports and athletics. However, it can also be useful if you are a bit of a gym bunny. Basically, if you are physically active, its probably going to be of benefit.
It is primarily used pre or post-competition. But it can also be used to help maintain and replenish the body on an ongoing basis.
Finding great sports massage near me
If you live and work in and around Central London give us a call. We are conveniently located just a stone’s throw away from Angel tube station.
Or if you are looking for Sports Massage advice in general, feel free to get in touch.