Sports massage therapy aims to relieve stress, tension and tightness in the body, by manipulating soft tissue such as; muscles, tendons and ligaments. Sports massage is a deeper and more intense massage than your typical Swedish massage treatments.
Sports massages, often referred to as deep tissue massage, has been adapted and modified over the many years, taking techniques from other treatment forms in order to perfect the formula. Techniques were originally developed in order to help improve sporting performance and aid the rehabilitation process. However, it is also beneficial for anyone with an injury, chronic pain, or restricted range of motion. Further treatments have been developed to assist stimulation of muscular activity. Pre-event massage consists of fast, light techniques in order to aid blood circulation and stimulation of the appropriate muscles – rapid massage techniques also trigger production and release of adrenaline.
Deep tissue massage generally covers a larger area of the body, often following a set routine of techniques to fit into a certain timeframe, spending equal time on both sides of the body. Sports massage tends to be more flexible, focusing more on specific regions of the body with more time spent on those required areas. Zones in less need of the treatment wouldn’t be attended to in such detail.The techniques in both deep tissue and sports massage therapies are essentially the same and both massage styles can easily be incorporated into the same appointment.
As well as benefiting those with a sporting background, sports massage is also beneficial to those with manual jobs or even desk-based roles. Sports massage therapy can help to alleviate chronic problems caused by issues such as poor posture, through a course of treatment.
Sports massage therapy is based on a combination of Swedish massage and various other techniques such as; frictions, vibrations, longitudinal stroking and stretching. Therapists require a thorough understanding of anatomy and physiology in order to apply the correct pressures on the correct areas of the body.
Some of the benefits of deep tissue and sports massage include:
Assisting in recovery
Decreasing the risk of injury
Relief from DOMS (delayed onset of muscle soreness)
Breakdown of adipose (fat) cells