Marathon record-setters such as Eliud Kipchoge (Kenya), have been able to remain high, strong, healthy, and full of energy at the sporting level for quite some years. Training, good genes, and accurate knowledge/coaching is essential to their successes. But sports massage therapy is a crucial factor to be considered an athletes training programme.
Sports massage therapy aid your running potential if you are training for a marathon, for stress relief or just for fun. And more than just being used as a tool for recovery or maintenance, sports massage will help you to prevent major or minor injuries.
What is Sports Massage Therapy?
Sports massage therapy is a system of bodywork for athletics that helps to develop muscle systems for athletic activities. It works for preventing or recovering from injuries, promoting flexibility, and also maintaining good optimal conditions. There are different approaches employed in sports massage to help athletes. And this may be before a sports event; during or after.
The process of Sports Massage Therapy is deep and firm that it helps circulation within soft tissue improve, and also relieve muscle tension. Even though it is called Sports Massage, you do not have to be a sportsperson to benefit from Sports Massage Therapy.
For anyone who engages in regular training for marathons or other events that involve covering distances, it is pertinent to employ Sports Massage. This way, you'll be able to enjoy the full range of benefits it offers.
Let's consider some techniques Sports Massage Therapists employ, to prevent or treat injuries:
- The therapist uses stretching techniques. Assisted stretches, which are known as MET, helps the muscles to regain its original length.
- The Therapist will work right onto the skin, using deep tissue oil massage as a way to speed up the recovery process. This process also flushes accumulated lactic acid through the muscles and prevents the buildup of muscle tension.
- A therapist uses a technique known as soft tissue release (STR). STR helps the muscle fibres to work effectively by stretching and re-aligning them. Therapists may also involve a myofascial release technique to correct postural imbalances. Myofascial pain is a pain that is caused by muscular irritation.
- In the case of muscle strength imbalance, a therapist will take a good time to work with you through the process of exercise, to help strengthen you again. He administers core strengthening remedial exercises to help you rebalance.
Here are benefits of preventing marathon injuries with sports massage therapy;
- Sports Massage Therapy relieves pain as it is thought to block signals of pain traveling to the brain. This process also enhances the flow of blood to the nerves, especially those impaired due to physical injury. Most injuries caused by running develops over time. They are also called overuse injuries which results from a recurrent impact. Therefore, if you are feeling a niggle, which is getting you bothered, it is better to get it checked quickly to avoid any further damage.
- Massage can prevent muscle soreness by increasing the movement of the lymph flow. Energetic exercises can overwork the tissues and joints, making them tighten and stiffen as a result. By employing sports massage therapy, you will experience muscle flexibility, decrease tension, and also improve the range of motion. This process helps for a shorter time of recovery.
- Massage helps to balance the muscles, causing a significant improvement in your posture. It restores range of motion; by stretching and loosening shortened muscles. Improved posture would encourage a well-organised movement and also prevent future postural injuries.
- Massage reduces stiffness and soreness of the muscles. In fact, research shows that touching or rubbing an area of pain enhances the ability of the body to heal naturally. Massage increases the circulation of blood in the affected area, and can also help in providing necessary nutrients for the tissues to recover. More so, it breaks down scar tissues and factors that prompt pain and stiffness during the time of recovery.
- Sports Massage therapy improves the relaxation of muscles and the mind. This method has other benefits to an athlete in training. It can help you reduce stress and keep you back on your feet after a tough session of training. This process helps your mental preparedness and puts you in the proper body conditions for the marathon.
In Conclusion, sports massage therapy will help every athlete and active person who desires to improve the mobility and flexibility of the body. It would help you to decrease tension, increase motion range, and ultimately, to prevent injury.