In honor of the Olympics opening ceremony in Rio yesterday, we now have sports on the brain. According to the American Massage Therapy Association (AMTA), massage acts to improve performance, reduce pain, prevent injury, encourage focus and shorten recovery time. Taking care of your body and muscles while playing a sport is crucial to not only performance but overall well being and health. Sports massage keeps the body in better condition, prevent injuries and loss of mobility, cure and restore mobility to injured muscle tissue, boost performance and extend the overall life of a sporting career.
Benefits of Sports Massage for athletes
- Break down of scar tissue. Scar tissue can build up from a previous injury and effect muscle, tendons and ligaments. Breaking down the scar tissue will help keep your muscles flexible to prevent injury and pain.
- Increases blood flow. Massage increases blood flow to muscle and tissue. It dilates the blood vessels so that nutrients and blood can move freely to feed the body for performance.
- Increases range of motion. Massage increases the bodies natural lubricants between the connective tissues. Some forms of massage like Neuromuscular Therapy can help heal scar tissue as well as tendon, ligament, and muscle tears. This creates more flexibility and higher range of motion.
- Stretching. Muscles are stretches lengthwise as well as sideways. The fascia that surrounds these muscles, release any tension or pressure build up.
- Decreases muscle stiffness after exercise. Tension and waste products can build up inside muscle tissue to cause pain. Massage helps break up waste such as lactic acid and encourage the muscles to take up oxygen and nutrients which help them recover quicker. *Tip: Make sure to drink plenty of water after a massage!
At USTA, our 9 month day or 11 month evening massage therapy programs offer a balanced study of anatomy, physiology, pathology, kinesiology, Eastern energies, Western techniques and professional development. Our nationally accredited school offers a top notch curriculum. Call for more information at (630) 968-6800.