Sports massage is used pre, post and throughout sporting events. It is designed to warm up muscle tissue, assist in training, prevent injury, and aid healing in case of soreness or injury.
Pre-event sports massage is designed to assist athletes in:
A pre-event massage should increase circulation of blood to the muscles, which is starting to warm your muscles in preparation of activity. By increasing circulation you are also allowing the muscles to become flushed and oxygenated, therefore tight muscles relax and allow the joints to move to their fullest range of motion. This massage should be performed -
Post Sports Massage is performed after a sporting event or after an intense training session. The idea of post sporting massage is to help stretch contracted over worked muscles out, prevent post exercise soreness and increase range of motion and blood flow to tight muscles. Performed correctly within 2 hours of an event massage can dramatically reduce delayed onset of muscles soreness (DOMS).
The aim here is to increase recovery by relieving soreness and fatigue. Massage does this by assisting to rid the muscles of metabolic by-products and relieving the increased tone of the muscle. As commonly thought lactic acid build up is not the cause of delayed muscle soreness, research finds this is cause by tiny tears in soft tissue, inflammation from overused muscles and upset nerve endings.
The inter-event massage is performed between multiple competitions on the same day. I has been proven to improve muscle recovery between periods of strenuous exercise. This massage will focus on just the main muscles stressed during the previous competition.
I believe that prevention is better than cure –in sports injuries can be very hard to prevent, however, by identifying abnormalities in soft tissue and specific areas of tightness which may have the potential to develop into an injury we are able to support and strengthen the area. During the sporting event the area can be have taping applied – sports taping is used for the prevention, management and treatment of sports injuries. Taping supports and protects whilst still allowing functional movement. With this is it important not to over use this method as if support is left on excessively it can weaken the muscle.
Through massage treatments in conjunction with guidance from other medical practitioners or physios.