What is a Pre-Event Sports Massage?
A pre-event massage is a short, specific treatment given immediately before a sports event. The goal of massage is to increase your circulation, flexibility and mental clarity to improve your performance.
A pre-event sports massage does not replace your warm up, but complements it. It is important for your massage therapist to know your sport or activity and what muscles are likely to be used the most. It is also useful to assess your athletic condition and needs well prior to the event. The pre-event massage is not the time and place to be performing deep or remedial treatment.
Factors such as temperature, anxiety, fatigue and hyperactivity are considered before your massage treatment. If you are cold, then more warming things need to be done. If are already warmed up, your therapist will focus on flexibility. If you are nervous some soothing strokes may be called for. As you can see, the pre-event sports massage will vary depending upon you and your chosen sport.
The amount and depth of treatment is the most important key to effective pre-event massage. Deep tissue work is usually contraindicated during a pre-event massage as it may cause too much of an increase in flexibility and it may interfere with your muscle timing and strength.
A pre-event massage can be performed anytime from two days until immediately before a sporting event. Right before the event is the most common time for this type of massage. If the athlete is going to do a warm-up and have a massage, the massage should be performed first, as massage can be relaxing and could counteract the warm-up if performed later. Most massage therapists will forgo massage oil for pre-event massage, as these can be slippery and may make the athlete uncomfortable or interfere with performance.
Increased Blood Supply
By having a pre–event massage increases the blood supply to the muscles. This is important for the muscles being able to perform in top shape during an event. The therapist will accomplish this by using compression or brisk friction moves on the athlete, drawing blood flow to the desired areas for optimum performance.
Massage before an athletic event can assist the performer with mobility of joints, Looser, more flexible joints can be an important advantage, especially in activities where being limber is important. However that this type of massage should be used with caution in sports where speed is the ultimate goal, as this can actually slow an athlete down a bit if the massage is performed immediately before the event.
Improved Mental Outlook
Massage feels good and is an enjoyable way to unwind before an event. Though the athlete would not want to become too relaxed before an event, massage can help with pre-event jitters and improve mental outlook and enthusiasm for the event or performance. Massage can be very helpful mentally for athletes and non-athletes alike.
If desired, having a pre-event massage performed can take the place of a warm-up or act as a supplement to one, as massage can accomplish many of the same goals as a warm up would. Pre-event massage is useful for stretching the tissues in preparation for an athletic event, state.
Important of a Post Event/Game MASSAGE
Quick recovery is the primary purpose of post-event sports massage. Athletes push themselves harder during an event than while training. It’s your competitive spirit pushing you to the limit. For example, during a marathon most athletes run a greater distance during the event than they’ve ever run during their training. A massage afterward is vital to assist a hasty pain-free recovery.
The sports massage therapist will aim to relax your muscle tone, improve your recovery circulation, and restore your flexibility. This allows for a quicker recovery and your prompt return to training without the usual stiffness and soreness.
Post-event massage can also be that first assessment for potential injuries, and more serious medical conditions (heat exhaustion or hypothermia), which may be identified early and treated promptly.
The school of thought is out as to when you will achieve the best results in a post-event massage: immediately or the next day.
POST-EVENT MASSAGE HELPS PROMOTE RECOVERY
After a big race/game a massage can help assist in your recovery and restore function to injured soft tissue (muscles, tendons and ligaments).
A good recovery may involve the use of various types of massage such as remedial or sports massage, as well as a range of other physical treatments to assist you get back on track.
Sports massage combines different massage techniques to enhance sports performance and recuperation and is an effective component of any training program. In targeting the various muscle groups that the person uses with stretching, deep tissue work and various range of motion techniques, flexibility and circulation are increased and soreness and pain are decreased. By keeping the muscles lengthened and out of spasm (which shortens the muscle fibers), the muscles maintain maximum firing power to do their work.
Sports massage is wonderful as a pre-event conditioning adjunct as well as a post event soreness/pain reduction modality. Our massage therapists see a wide variety of athletes/performers including marathon runners, swimmers, soccer players, weight trainers, tennis players, golfers, hockey players, dancers, lacrosse players, skiers, and cyclists. Sports massage can be of benefit to the amateur weekend athlete as well as the professional.
The benefits to massage include:
*Assists in relaxation.
*Reduces anxiety and stress.
*Improves blood flow, benefiting the circulatory and lymphatic systems.
*Relieves muscular tightness and pain, neck and shoulder tension, muscle spasm and cramps.
*Assists in the management and prevention of headaches.
*Increases joint movements and flexibility.
*Helps in the elimination of waste and toxins.
*Promotes the healing of injured tissues.
*Assists with injury prevention, rehabilitation and recovery.
*Facilitates muscle imbalance assessment and treatment.
*Reduces excessive scar tissue formation.
*Benefits to post-event massage include:
Massage will promote recovery and relieve pain.
*Assists with muscle repair and reduce the production of Cytokines
*Massage stimulates mitochondria which is found inside cells and convert into energy essential for cell repair.
*Stroking encourages blood flow to muscular vessels. This helps injured muscles gain better access to nutrition and energy.
*Deep muscle massage techniques improve oxygen levels and aid in flushing out toxins that build up during a run.
*Stretching muscles relieves tension.
*Massage is beneficial for restoring elasticity and breaking down scar tissue.
Research shows that myo-fascial massage assists in the recovery of diastolic blood pressure after high intensity exercise. Our aim is to improve lymph flow and flush out toxins and lactic acid that can build up in the muscles.
Reduce muscle tension
Muscles can remain with a higher level of tone immediately after activity, massage and stretching can help to restore normality in the muscle tone and release tension and tightness.
Calm the Athlete
Massage has physiological and psychological benefits. It can stimulate the ‘Parasympathetic’ nervous system leading the athlete to calm, relax and improve the immune system. Just as importantly it has been shown to improve the perceived fatigue level of the athlete enabling them to perform better in future events.
Book in a Pre and post massage after all your sporting events.
Call, email me to make a booking. YOUR HEALTH IS IMPORTANT