Anyone can take advantage of massage therapy to feel better; however, when it comes to injured athletes, its significance is not only limited to experiencing relaxation, it’s much more than that. A unique physical therapy technique, massage therapy helps in improving their quality of life by making it easier for them to deal with the pain and discomfort that occurs due to sports injuries and chronic diseases.
According to Exclusive Physical Therapy, “Therapeutic massage involves a wide range of unique manual techniques (delivered by your physical therapist‘s hands) that can be used to target specific tissues in your body, including muscles, fascia, lymph nodes, joints, and tendons.”
No matter how physically strong an athlete is, they can’t always avoid the circumstances that lead to back, neck, shoulder, head, knee, hip, and foot and ankle injuries. Since getting injured is quite common for athletes, it’s significant for them to rely on a technique that heals them naturally.
In other words, it’s not a good idea to take medicines for every injury that you receive as that can have a severe impact on your overall health. And as an athlete, you can’t afford to compromise on your health because that can affect your performance to a great extent. Therefore, it’s always helpful to rely on non-invasive and drug-free methods to cure your injuries and to subside the pain that results from them.
According to NCBI, a large number for sports medical professionals, coaches and athletes believe that massage strengthens the human body by improving blood flow, and by minimizing muscle tension. Besides, it also reduces neurological excitability. And they hold this belief due to their experiences and observations. It further says that since it helps in producing mechanical pressure, it eventually reduces both active and passive stiffness and increases the range of motion.
There is little dispute about the fact that healthcare professionals have been using massage therapy for centuries to cure injuries and chronic illnesses. You will find enough evidence on the use of massage by medical practitioners belonging to different cultures in the ancient time. It means, it would be wrong to say that we have explored the benefits of massage therapy for healing injuries and illness recently, as it has been used for this purpose for ages now.
So, as an athlete, if you haven’t sought massage therapy until now, here is why you should go for it.
To Strengthen & Relax Muscles
Athletes often experience pain, tension, and tightness in muscles. So, if you are also experiencing any of these problems, you can see a trusted physical therapist in your city who can offer massage therapy to you. Yes, you got that right. Massage can help reduce the pain, stiffness, and tension in your muscles, thereby making you feel better.
Your physical therapist will apply pressure on your body with gentle hand movements, which will not only offer relaxation but will also strengthen the muscles. And since strong muscles are utterly essential for carrying out intense physical activities, you shouldn’t think twice while seeking massage therapy from a well-known and experienced physical therapist.
To Promote Flexibility
Being an athlete, you can’t afford to compromise on your flexibility as that can stop you from giving a good performance during a competition. Yes, if you want to play more efficiently, you have to work on your flexibility level, and one of the best ways to enhance it is to go for massage therapy.
It will not only increase your flexibility but will also enhance your range of motion. As your physical therapist will focus on strengthening your muscles, ligaments, tendons, and bones, it will eventually improve your ability to carry out physical activities.
To Subside Your Pain
Whether you talk about mild injuries or severe injuries, massage therapy is beneficial in both the cases for experiencing a quick recovery. Even if your doctor has asked you to seek surgical treatment for your injury because it’s too severe, you can still rely on massage therapy for reducing your recovery period.
Since massage therapy helps in producing endorphins – the natural painkillers, it plays a vital role in subsiding the pain that results from sports injuries like shin splints, tennis elbow, sciatica, sprains, strains, and a hamstring strain, etc.
To Cure Injuries
Whether you are a gymnast or a soccer player, you must be able to deal with your injuries quickly and effectively to stay fit. There are several factors, why you take so much of time to recover from an injury, and one of the most important among them is poor circulation. However, massage can address this problem, thereby enhancing your body’s ability to heal injuries naturally.
By improving your circulation, massage therapy plays an indispensable role in supplying the nutrients to the injured tissues, which ultimately stimulates the healing process.
To Minimise Stress
Athletes often feel stressed out due to the kind of pressure and competition they face, and to reduce its impact on their health, they must seek massage. It helps in balancing the production of cortisol, which is a stress hormone.
Besides, massage also helps in enhancing the level of serotonin- which is a natural mood booster. Therefore, after a massage therapy session, you start feeling good naturally. Feeling good is very good for athletes, as it can help them improve their performance.
Last but not least, massage therapy is also essential for athletes to lower blood pressure. Yes, if you stick to massage for a long time, you can see a significant reduction in both diastolic and systolic blood pressure, which can improve your performance eventually.