Some think that Sports Massage is just for athletes or those that regularly exercise. They would be wrong. Sports Massage is a great tool for treating a wide range of musculoskeletal concerns, supporting recovery and also has mental health benefits. So, when should you go for a Sports Massage?
Individuals should book a Sports Massage appointment when they feel the warning signs of muscular aches and pains. These include:
- Stiffness, aches and pain
- Reduced sporting performance
- Injuries causing problems
- Athletes should book regular appointments to reduce DOMS, the risk of injury and maximise performance.
Read on to learn more about Sports Massage, its benefits and when people should book an appointment.
When to Get a Sports Massage
People use Sports Massage for different reasons. When they should get a massage will depend on this reason. For example, athletes will have regular Sports Massage sessions to keep their body in top condition and to help avoid injury. It can also help to reduce DOMS (delayed onset muscle soreness).
However, Sports Massage isn’t only for athletes. They can be incredibly beneficial for a range of conditions that affect the general public. These include:
- Limited range of motion
- Musculoskeletal conditions
- Injury and recovery
- Stress and anxiety
- Trouble sleeping
How Often Should You Have a Sports Massage?
It is recommended that individuals suffering from the above conditions have Sports Massages every 1-4 weeks, depending on the severity of the condition. However, some experts recommend weekly appointments, or at least two per month.
Warning signs that an individual needs a massage include feeling achy or stiff, feeling limited in sports performance, a general feeling of stress or anxiety, or if an injury is causing problems.
Learn more about this in our dedicated blog, How Often Should You Get A Sports Massage?
How Long Does it Take to Work?
Typically, it can take up to 48 hours to begin noticing the effects of Sports Massage. Some individuals may notice the effects sooner or later than others but it does not mean that the treatment is any more or less effective.
It is also important to note that those unused to Sports Massage may feel soreness after their first few sessions. This is because the body is unused to being manipulated in such ways. Often, people liken the feeling to DOMS (delayed onset muscle soreness). It should only be a minor ache and will go away on its own after a day or so.
Learn more about this in our blog, Why Does Sports Massage Hurt So Much?
Benefits of Sports Massage
The benefits of Sports Massage are both physical and mental. They include:
- DOMS reduction - A study found that a quick 5 minute Sports Massage post-exercise can make a significant reduction in DOMS.
- Increased range of motion and flexibility - All types of massage are reported to improve range of motion, particularly in the shoulder area and lower limbs.
- Decreased recovery time from exercise and/or injury - It is thought that massage helps to reduce recovery time due to its focus on deep tissue penetration.
- Decreased muscle tension - Sports massage manipulates the muscles, tissues and tendons, helping to relieve tension.
- Decreased muscle spasms - Relieving muscle tension and fatigue can help to reduce muscle spasms.
- Increased sense of wellbeing - Sports massage can exude a sense of calm, helping to reduce stress, anxiety and other tensions.
- Improved sleep -Massage forces the body to relax and increases Serotonin, helping people to sleep better.
Learn more about the benefits of Sports Massage in our blog, What is Sports Massage Good For?
How Long Do the Benefits Last?
On average, most people tend to feel the benefits of massage for around a week after their treatment. But, this will vary from person to person. Some will experience long-term benefits of up to a month, while others may only feel the benefits for a few days.
This is why regular Sports Massage appointments are recommended, especially for those with chronic or ongoing concerns. Weekly appointments (or at least every other week) will help to maintain the benefits.
Individuals should go for a Sports Massage when they notice the warning signs:
- Feeling achy or stiff
- Feeling limited in sports performance
- Feelings of stress or anxiety
- If an injury is causing problems
People may also want to book a Sports Massage if they are recovering from an injury, or if they’re trying to avoid an injury. Likewise, athletes may want to book regular Sports Massage appointments to help reduce DOMS and maximise performance.
Learn more about Massage Therapy in our Sports Massage Training courses. Curated and delivered by expert clinicians, our courses provide you with everything you need to safely and effectively provide massage to clients. If you’re completely new to massage, take a look at our level 3 course. For those more experienced, our level 4 course may be more suitable.
Who Can Benefit from Sports Massage?
As we have already explained, Sports Massage is not only for those that partake in sports and exercise. The therapy was built around the needs of athletes but they are also incredibly beneficial for those of the general public that have musculoskeletal concerns.
What’s the Difference Between Sports Massage and Deep Tissue Massage?
Whilst similar on the surface, Sports Massage and Deep Tissue Massage are, in fact, different disciplines. A Sports Massage is usually focussed on one area of the body to treat a specific concern. A Deep Tissue Massage is typically administered across the whole body to relieve muscle tension, aches and pains.
Learn more about this in our blog, What is the Difference Between Sports Massage and Deep Tissue Massage?