Elite athletes know the benefits of taking care of their bodies. In fact, anyone with an active lifestyle can see significant benefits from getting sports massages before and after strenuous physical activity. Sports massages can help you improve your athletic performance and enjoyment of your active lifestyle, whether you’re a weekend warrior or a dedicated athlete trying to compete at your peak.
Where regular massages focus on whole-body relaxation and wellness, sports massages are focused massage treatments to boost your athletic performance. It helps increase flexibility and loosen tight muscles.
Here are the three times or reasons you’ll likely get a sports massage in Vancouver:
- Regular massage: Prevention by warming up your muscles can help you avoid injury. Talk to your massage therapist about the types of sports you play, and they can target the muscle groups related to that sport. They can help you increase your range of motion and keep your body limber.
- Massage for competition: If you have a big event coming up, your sports massage therapist may change up how you get your massages. Getting a massage right before your event can help improve your performance (think of it like a warm-up stretch for your muscles). They can use specific techniques to help reduce muscle spasms and metabolic build-up. The goal is to reduce your risk of injury.
- Recovery: Sports massages in Vancouver can also be helpful after you play your sport. It can help aid in muscle recovery and minimize downtime from achy, sore muscles. It can also help address any acute or chronic injuries safely.
Here are the top 5 benefits of getting regular sports massages if you play recreational or competitive sports:
1. Decreases muscle tension
Muscle tension happens with overuse (such as when playing an intensive physical sport or doing repetitive motions). It’s characterized by your muscles flexing when they should be relaxed. You’ll likely notice it as body or joint stiffness, pain, and a restricted range of motion.
Sports massages help relieve muscle tension before you’re active, minimizing the chance of muscle injury when you work out. It can also be used if you experience tight muscles after your sport.
2. Improved circulation
A sports massage will also help improve circulation in your body. The friction between your massage therapist’s touch and your skin helps blood and lymphatic circulation. As your lymphatic system properly flushes toxins out of your body, you’ll notice healthier muscles, aiding your athletic performance.
Various techniques are used to improve circulation, depending on where you need it and your tolerance for the pressure. Often, it will include a combination of manipulating both superficial and deep muscles. It’s a sports massage technique that can be used as a preventative treatment, to treat an injury, or to soothe tight muscles.
3. Removes lactic acids
Lactic acid is a byproduct of your body breaking down the energy it needs during exercise. It can cause muscle soreness or a burning sensation when it builds up. The best way to aid in its removal is by resting or decreasing your exercise intensity.
Your body naturally removes lactic acid from your body after your workout, usually within the first hour. However, if your circulatory system is blocked or not functioning correctly, it will take longer, and your painful symptoms will continue. Maintaining a healthy, clear circulatory system will help, as will a post-activity massage, to help clear the blockages and aid in faster recovery.
4. Improves recovery time
Rest is usually an effective, natural way to help your body recover after strenuous activity. However, you can support this process by getting a sports massage before and after your activity. A massage will improve circulation, ease sore muscles, and remove lactic acid from your body.
5. Helps with mental preparation
A sports massage can also help you mentally prepare for your sport or workout. During a massage, you’re encouraged to relax your body and mind. Ask your massage therapist to play soothing music and let them know if you prefer to limit your conversations during your treatment so you can calm your mind.
Massages can also help you lower your blood pressure (due to increased relaxation) and sleep better (by influencing your body’s production of serotonin and natural melatonin). And, when you’re not distracted by stress and anxiety, you can better focus on your physical sport without hindrance.
Where to get a sports massage in Vancouver
Oceana Massage has registered massage therapists specially trained in giving sports massages to help you prepare for the physical rigours of playing a sport and aid in your recovery.
We get that you’re likely always on the go and are occasionally testing the limits of your physical body through sport. Our registered practitioners deliver remedial massage treatments so you can better manage the pace and activity in your life. Our team has over 10 years of experience creating customized treatment plans for many active Vancouverites.
Your healing journey begins now. Book an appointment for preventative and post-sport massages today.