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How Does Sports Massage Reduce Pain?

Dr. Carl Clarkson • January 6, 2022

A sports massage has both physical and psychological benefits. But how can a massage therapist, who applies pressure to specific muscles using specific techniques, actually lower the amount of pain that clients are experiencing? In this article, we will look at how sports massage relieves pain, and helps the body regain normal mobility.

So, how does a sports massage help with pain relief? When the body is in pain, endorphins are released as a natural source of pain relief. When a sports massage therapist applies pressure to pain points, the release of endorphins is accelerated, and the muscle relaxes sooner.

Read on to learn more about sports massage for pain relief.

How Does Sports Massage Reduce Pain?

The human body really is amazing with what it can do, both in a good way and a not-so-good way. Thankfully, if your clients are experiencing any pain, their body has a natural remedy.

When the body is in pain, endorphins are released as a natural source of pain relief. When a sports massage therapist applies pressure, the release of endorphins is accelerated and, as they race around the body locating the pain, they reduce metabolic irritants, helping the muscle to relax sooner.

Furthermore, pain isn't necessarily all physical; it may also be psychological. Endorphins are what counteracts this sensation of pain when they reach the brain.

The endorphin chemical is found in the pituitary gland and, once produced, it interacts with neurotransmitters to help lower anxiety and stress while also serving as a natural pain reliever and enhancing clients' mood.

Further Benefits Of Sports Massage

Sports massage further helps to relieve pain in the following ways:

  • DOMS reduction
  • Reduces chronic pain
  • Improves recovery
  • Prevents further pain and injury
  • Increased muscle flexibility

What Are the Techniques To Reduce Pain During Sports Massage?

Sports massage therapists use a variety of different sports massage techniques to provide clients with the best treatment possible. Treatments are frequently tailored to the type of pain that clients are experiencing and the location of the discomfort, however, we have outlined a few techniques that a sports massage therapist can use to alleviate pain.

  • Effleurage - Depending on the purpose and stage of the massage, the stroking method, effleurage, is performed with different pressure and speed to reduce pain and tension.

  • Kneading - Kneading in sports massage involves massaging the tissue in a variety of ways. Lifting, squeezing, and manipulating tissues to reduce tension.

  • Wringing - This massage technique includes compressing soft tissues such as skin and muscle tissue against each other to ease the pain.

  • Trigger Pointing - Pressure is applied directly to trigger points to help alleviate pain and stimulate blood flow.

How Long Until You Experience Pain Relief?

It is likely that clients will have some pain and tightness around their region of discomfort after a sports massage. By the 24-hour mark, they should be feeling the effects of the sports massage; ideally, their muscles should be relaxed, their body should not be as stiff, and pain should be significantly reduced.

This is not to say that one sports massage treatment is enough; as a therapist you should be able to recommend more sports massage treatments as necessary to ensure that the pain or discomfort is completely relieved, and that the effects are long-lasting.

Sports Massage Courses at Breeze Academy

Breeze Academy is one of the UK's leading professional training providers. Breeze Academy offers a variety of sports massage course courses, including the Level 3 Diploma in Sports Massage Therapy and the Level 4 Certificate in Sports Massage Therapy, which are ideal for those looking to start a new profession or expand on their current knowledge.

Contact us today to learn more about our sports massage training courses.

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