Sports Massage

The Definitive Guide to Sports Massage

01. Introduction

02. Description of Sports Massage

03. History of Sports Massage

04. Benefits of Sports Massage

05. Sports Massage vs. Standard Massage Methods

06. Finding and Choosing the Best Sports Massage Therapist

07. Sports Massage Methods

08. Sports Massage After Events

09. Sports Massage and Injuries

10. When Sports Massage Should Not Be Used

11. Sports Massage and Sports Performance

12. Conclusion

13. Resources

Introduction 

No one takes up sports to sit on the sidelines. Most people know going in that they will be required to use their muscles in ways that are particular to that sport. They know that the movements they use on the field of play will challenge their bodies in new and different ways than ever before. If their muscles are tight and their joints are sore at the end of the game, they are not at all surprised.

Elite athletes know what to do about their muscle aches and pains. They employ sports massage therapists to help them. Sports massage, or bodywork as it is also called, can be used as a preparation for play, during games or events, after events and for maintenance during the off-season. It takes an expert massage therapist to know how and when to do the bodywork, but elite athletes have access to the best. Most of these athletes are strong believers in the power of a good massage.

You do not have to be an elite athlete to benefit from a sports massage. If you are on an amateur baseball team, play tennis as a hobby, or just work out hard every weekend, you may have muscle and joint issues that affect your play and even your general wellbeing. If so, you will be happy to know that massage therapists who specialize in sports massage are available to help you feel better.

In this Definitive Guide to Sports Massage, you will learn what a sports massage is, where it all got started and the benefits of sports massage. You will begin to understand how sports massage relates to standard massage therapy and gain some knowledge about the methods used. It is important to find the right sports massage therapist, and this Guide will help you with that task. You will find information on the different applications of sports massage, when it should be used and when it is contraindicated, and you will learn how sports massage can help sports performance. Sports massage has a great following, and here you can find out why.

 Description of Sports Massage

Sports massage is a special type of massage that is particularly helpful to athletes. It is used before, during and after sports events. When a massage therapist works the soft tissues of the body, there are a variety of benefits such as preventing injury, working out the soreness, and enhancing sports performance. Most elite athletes have sports massages done regularly as a part of their training program.

Sports massages are done by qualified sports massage therapists, often in spas, sports medicine clinics, or even hospitals. An untrained person would not know the important details of bodywork, and could cause injury rather than prevent it. Most athletes like to be familiar with the massage therapist that works on them.

Techniques for sports massage are borrowed from traditional massage styles, such as Shiatsu and Swedish massage. Bodywork is also very sport-specific. The massage therapist uses knowledge of the way the body moves in your particular sport in determining what are the most likely muscular and joint problems and needs. He also uses this insider information to know how to prepare your body for an upcoming event.

Sports massage can be used for any team sport players, tennis and golf players, skiers, swimmers, gymnasts and just about any sport that includes powerful movements. In fact, some people get sports massages when they do not do sports, if they are simply working out vigorously. Others even get sports massages after physical jobs like moving furniture or planting a garden.

A sports massage can be stimulating, it can be relaxing, or it can be a relief from pain. A sports massage is not a cure for every sports-related injury or defect. It was never meant to be a cure-all. However, it has its place and it has been helping athletes reach their peak practice and performance levels for several years.

 History of Sports Massage

Massage itself has been around for thousands of years. According to documents written in China 3000 BC, massage was being used as a treatment for ailments 5000 years before that. The ancient Persians and Indians were also known for their use of massage in healing. In the first Olympic games of 776 BC, the athletes had massages before their events. Use of and information about massage kept progressing, and then in about 100 AD, China produced the first schools of massage.

In the latter half of the 1800’s, after centuries of world interest in massage, there was a man named Johann Mezger of Holland who introduced his system of medical massage to the scientific community, using terms that are still in use today. However, the first sports massage methods were not officially laid out until the Finnish School of Massage developed them in 1900.

In 1924, runner Paavo Nurmi of Finland won 5 gold medals at the Olympics, and claimed that his special massage regimen was a major factor in the wins. Next, Dr. I.M. Sarkisov-Sirasini began teaching his ideas for Russian sports massage at the Central Institute of Physical Therapy in Moscow, between 1924 and 1930.

About 1945 a German POW intrigued pro athlete and massage therapist Jack Meagher by giving him special massages. Meagher said that the massages enhanced his sports performance dramatically. Although he already knew the techniques of Swedish massage, Meagher went to a German massage therapist to learn this different method.

In 1980, Jack Meagher was to make his most famous contribution to the field of sports massage. He wrote a book entitled “A Complete Program for Increasing Performance and Endurance in Fifteen Popular Sports.” The book became a classic in sports massage theory and technique.

By 1985, the American Massage Therapy Association created the National Sports Massage Team to provide massage for Boston Marathon runners. Although the NSMT is no longer in existence, sports massage is still a recognized specialty in massage therapy. Its history continues to move on.

1992 saw the introduction of the National Certification Board for Therapeutic Massage. Sports massage was first offered as a core medical service in the Atlanta Olympics in 1996. Sports massage has gained in popularity nearly every year since then. Some elite athletes now have sports massage therapists who travel with them. Sports teams employ massage therapists to treat every member of their teams.

Amateur and recreational athletes are getting into the act, having sports massages to improve their performance, prevent injury and to feel better after a workout. People are still interested in feeling their best when playing sports and many of them still see sports massage as the best method to achieve that goal. There are no signs that sports massage therapy is going away anytime in the near future.

 Benefits of Sports Massage 

There is a good reason sports massage is becoming more popular – it works. It offers many benefits for athletes to aid in their game play as well as in their everyday lives. Bodywork has come into widespread use, and the advantages speak for themselves.

1. Sports massage, like any massage, will increase the circulation of blood in the body. Of course, improved circulation is always important, but it is especially helpful for athletes. The circulation in the muscles slows down during activity, and the muscles become tight and sore a few hours later. After a massage, the muscles will be refreshed by this wash of new, oxygenated blood.

2. Sports massage increases flow in lymphatic system. This renewed circulation, along with the improved circulation of blood, helps the body carry away waste products. This is a good thing, since athletes’ muscles build up large amounts of different types of waste, such as lactic acid, during prolonged events.

3. Sports massage prevents or treats a condition called delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS). This condition happens a few hours after exercise, especially if it is not exercise that the athlete is accustomed to doing. This condition cannot only be painful, but it can also affect the player’s ability to perform well in the next event or even cause him problems with everyday functioning. Massage can be used to treat this condition in most cases.

4. Bodywork can improve flexibility. Part of the time in a sports massage is spent with the massage therapist stretching the body parts to improve joint flexibility and relieve joint pain. This passive stretching also improves range of motion for the athlete.

5. Sports massage can be used to help the athlete prevent injuries. The bodywork that is done on all the muscles and joints makes them more resilient. They help lengthen out shortened, tightened muscles and increase muscle stability. Muscle imbalances can be corrected for more harmonious movements that are less likely to result in injury.

6. Bodywork can be used in the treatment of certain injuries that have already occurred. Identification of the problem is the first step, and the sports massage therapist is often the first to make notice the problems. Some injuries that a sports massage therapist might be able to help are: sprains, strains, plantar fasciitis, and tendinitis.

7. During a sports massage, the therapist might work with scar tissue to improve its position and texture and to help reduce it. Scar tissue from muscle damage can be a limiting factor in sports ability.

8. The massage therapist can use massage to either sedate or stimulate the nerve endings. In a pre-event massage it would be important to do everything to stimulate the muscles and nerves for the game ahead. In a post-event massage, relaxation is the key to success.

9. A good sports massage can prepare you physically and mentally for peak performance in your sport. The ability of massage to improve mental states is well-documented. As for physical benefits of massage, there is enough living proof to convince almost anyone of its efficacy. With your muscles in the proper condition and balance, and your mind in a positive and exhilarated state, you are ready to conquer the world – or at least your opponent.

 Sports Massage vs. Standard Massage Methods 

Some people – even sports massage therapists – say that there is nothing different between sports massage and any other type of massage. That is an oversimplification. Of course, there are some things that are similar in sports massage to other types of massage, but there are also differences. Consider these facts for a more reasonable view.

Purpose of Massage

The purpose of the usual massage may vary from relieving the aches and pains of pregnancy to calming sore shoulders after a hard day at the office. The purpose of a sports massage is very specific. It is designed to prevent and treat sports injuries, relieve muscle pain, increase flexibility and range of motion, prepare the athlete for the mental game, and help him achieve peak performance in his sports event.

Types of Massage Used

A standard massage therapist of any sort should be knowledgeable in the methods of one or more types of massage, such as Swedish, deep tissue, Shiatsu, Thai, reflexology, hot stone, pregnancy or back massage. The sports massage therapist sticks to a particular blend of deep tissue, Shiatsu and Swedish massage that has been developed over the years as the norm for sports massage.

Speed of Massage

The massage therapist’s hands will normally move very slowly during a routine massage. In sports massage, the movement of the hands are often much faster and more precise.

Knowledge of Sports Movement

The sports massage therapist should have a good grasp of each individual sport he works with, and how the players move in that sport. What is more, he should know the differences between the physical demands of one position on a team and another. He uses this knowledge to prepare the athlete for a performance, or to identify problems after the game.

Unique Pre-Event Massages

In most forms of massage, the focus is on relaxation, and there are times in sports massage where relaxation is also the plan. However, there are also special pre-event sports massages that are different than most ordinary massages. They are meant to stimulate the muscles and focus the mind. They increase circulation. They help prepare the body for the specific movements that will be demanded of it during the sports event. In short, total relaxation is the enemy in a pre-event sports massage.

Lengthens Athletic Career

Sports massage may actually have the effect of lengthening athletic careers. With proper preparation before games, prevention and treatment of injury, and restoration of muscle function after play, the athlete has a better chance of lasting for more years employed in his game or event. Practitioners of other forms of massage do not usually concern themselves with the long-term livelihood of the clients. In sports massage career length is addressed as a major concern for all athletes.

 Finding and Choosing the Best Sports Massage Therapist 

Once you decide that you want to have sports massage therapy, the next step is to find someone who does the bodywork you want. There are a lot of people out there offering a sports massage that do not have the slightest idea what that entails. Look for sports massage therapists by asking fellow athletes, contacting the licensing board, or doing research online. To choose a sports massage therapist you can trust, do not be afraid to ask as many questions as you need.

1. What is your education?

At the very least, your massage therapist should have a high school diploma with some sort of certification. It is preferable that he have some kind of post-secondary schooling in the art and science of massage Ask for details. Ideally, courses should at least have 500 hours of study and cover a range of topics such as kinesiology, anatomy, and hands-on sports massage. Make sure the school is accredited by the state. Ask about any continuing education classes the candidate has taken.

2. Are you licensed in this state?

Every state has its own individual rules and regulations on massage therapist certification. Each state has the power to decide what test will be used to test potential therapists for licensure. The two national tests are the National Certification Exam for Therapeutic Massage and Bodywork, and the Massage and Bodywork Licensing Examination. Each state can require one of these, a test of its own, or none at all if no laws are in place for massage therapy licensing. Check with the state and city to make sure his credentials meet or exceed local requirements.

3. Are you insured?

It is important to get together with an insured sports massage therapist for several reasons. For one thing, an insured massage therapist will be able to take care of you financially if anything were to go wrong under his care. Second, if he is insured, it is unlikely that he has hurt people severely, or he would probably not carry insurance or not even able to afford it. It also shows that he is running a legitimate business.

4. What is your experience?

Look for a sports massage therapist with 3 to 5 years of experience, with a good deal of that time spent primarily in sports massage work. Ask where he has worked and what he did at each place. Ask if you can contact the employers.

5. What is your knowledge of my sport?

Have a conversation with your potential sports massage therapist about your sport. Let him take the lead in discussing the movements required in the sport and the types of injuries he sees most often in that sport. If you have been in your sport long, you will be a good judge as to his level of expertise on your sport.

6. Do you have any references I can contact?

A sports massage therapist worth his salt would probably have a list of people who would be glad to share their experiences. Of course, he is not going to give you his problem clients as references, but you might be surprised at some of the responses you hear. People who are asked for their opinion will often like to go the extra mile and give a full description, including the negative points.

As you ask all these questions, try to get a feel for how you interact with the possible massage therapist candidate. Notice whether he puts you at ease or makes you feel uncomfortable. Notice the difference between the amount of time he spends talking about himself and the amount of time he devotes to explaining how he can help you. If possible, ask for a brief sample massage. There is nothing so telling as the hands of a sports massage therapist to help you decide which one to choose.

 Sports Massage Methods 

The sports massage therapist uses a number of methods to help his clients. He assesses the body’s needs before and during the massage to make sure and use the best techniques. The three most commonly used for sports massage are effleurage, petrissage and frictions, but others may be used as well.

Effleurage

The effleurage strokes are used primarily during the beginning of the massage to warm up the muscles and at the end of the massage to leave the client relaxed. Compared to other strokes in sports massage, these strokes are fairly light. The hand and fingers are spread wide and used to apply firm pressure. This relaxes the client, increases circulation and warms up the muscles for the deeper strokes to come. Many times it is during effleurage that problem areas are discovered.

Petrissage

You might know petrissage as kneading. It is a deep tissue technique that is used mainly on the larger muscles. It is excellent for relaxing and for moving the fluids in these deep tissues. Petrissage is also useful in stretching tight muscle fibers.

Frictions

Frictions are massage strokes that are performed in a long and slow manner. Sometimes they are done in a circular motion. Frictions can be painful, but they are not normally used for a long time during any massage. They can be used to search out muscle problems or scar tissue. They can also be used to help break down that scar tissue. The thumb can be used to check for abnormalities, and the joints can be examined and treated. Frictions clear away waste and correct muscle problems, but they also cause inflammation. Therefore, they should always be followed up with a round of effleurage.

Percussion

There are several massage techniques that are all lumped together under the heading of percussion. In cupping, the sports massage therapist will cup his hands and apply pressure to the muscles. He might also use his fingertips to tap on the muscles and tissues. Those chopping motions that most people are familiar with are called hacking. The massage therapist may slap with an open palm or pound with his fists. Tapotement is a very light drumming of the fingertips on the muscles to have an effect on the nerves, either stimulating or calming.

Vibrations

The hand shakes the thighs, the back or the buttocks in a trembling motion called vibrations. The best use of vibrations is to stimulate the nerves.

The sports massage therapist is the expert, so he should be able to answer your questions if you do not understand what he is doing. If you trust him, though, and the effects are good, you might simply want to sit back and let him do his work.

 Sports Massage After Events 

The four cornerstones of sports massage therapy sessions are pre-event sessions, intra-event sessions, post-event sessions and maintenance massage. One of these stands out as the most popular among all athletes, including amateur and recreational athletes. It is the massage session you get after the event or workout. Some outstanding features set this type of massage apart from the rest.

1. The goal of the post-event sports massage is homeostasis.

Homeostasis is a state of equilibrium or normality. If you are an athlete or you have just finished a recreational sport or a workout, your body in a condition that is much altered from usual. Your temperature, breathing, your heart rate, your range of motion, the tightness of your muscles, and waste products built up in your system have all created changes in your muscles, tissues and organs. The sports massage done about 2 hours after the end of an event should help you get back to that routine state of homeostasis you are accustomed to.

2. The sports massage therapist can identify problems that occurred during the event.

After the event is over, you might have cuts and bruises, hyperthermia, and other problems that need to be attended to immediately. Although the sports massage therapist may not be qualified to treat such conditions and injuries, he will identify the problem and send you for medical help.

3. Injuries can be prevented or, in some cases, treated.

When the body is in such a vulnerable state as it is after the strenuous effort of an event or workout, it is easy to become injured following the event. By being proactive, the sports massage therapist can head off these injuries before they happen. Injuries of some kinds can even be treated during a sports massage if they are not too severe and the massage therapist has the right skills. Also, you might have tiny tears in the muscles that the massage therapist can treat.

4. Post-event sports massage is helpful in treating muscular cramps and pain.

It is very common among athletes and exercisers who give their all to their event to suffer from severe muscle cramps and pain. The massage will stretch out and lengthen the muscles. It will improve their tone so that they are not prone to more cramping. Sports massage can also treat the pain that comes with overexertion on the field of play.

5. Post-event sports massage gets rid of the waste formed during the event.

Athletes and serious exercisers are likely to form lactic acid in their muscles. This is a waste product that needs to be removed before the body can get back to normal. The post-event massage can get rid of lactic acid and other toxins and wastes when circulation is improved.

6. Sports massage can address the fact that post-event cool-downs are sometimes lacking after athletic events.

Sometimes athletes are too excited, disappointed, or in a hurry to be done that they do not do the proper cool-down after their physical exercise. This is an unfortunate habit, but sports massage can be an alternate remedy that athletes are more interested in taking the time to do. Sports massage addresses problems of exertion and relaxes the athlete to send him on his way feeling and functioning in a much more normal condition.

 Sports Massage and Injuries 

The sports massage therapist can work on certain injuries that occur during athletic events. If he knows the sport in question very well, he will have a good idea of where to look for possible problems. There are a few injuries that happen frequently in sports.

Hamstring Strains

Hamstrings are those muscles on the back of the thigh that help you move your leg, knee and thigh. Hamstring strains are very common injuries after athletic events. Often, once an athlete has a hamstring strain, it happens to him more often.

The sports massage therapist will assess the muscles and decide whether they need to be lengthened. Besides possibly lengthening the hamstrings, the massage therapist will also work the area to remove waste. Most of all, he will soften the muscles as a treatment and a preventative measure.

Shin Splints

Runners are especially prone to having shin splints, but many other athletes get them as well. They are painful areas on the front or side of the lower leg. If they are not treated properly, the end result could be that the athlete would develop stress fractures in the legs. The first step after an event that produces shin splints is to rest, apply ice and compression and elevate the legs.

Sports massage can be used to treat this injury after the most painful period has subsided. The massage would start with light effleurage. Then a technique called “stripping the muscle” would be used. Skilled sports therapists do this technique by rubbing deeply at a certain point on the muscles of the bones without applying pressure to the bones themselves. After that, the usual explorations for and treatments of knots and scar tissue can improve the situation. Light effleurage finishes the process.

Ankle Strains

Ankle strains are common in almost any sport you can name. The first thing a sports massage therapist will do is find out if it is the first time the ankle was strained. If so, she will treat it by flushing out the tissues and prevent further injuries by removing adhesions. If it is an old injury that keeps recurring, she will be very careful not to lengthen an already stretched ligament with too much friction. She will work at energizing the muscles and restoring balance to the area.

Plantar Fasciitis

Plantar fasciitis presents as a painful heel and foot, but the cause of the pain is inflammation of a thick band of muscle connecting the heel to the toes. Athletes have this injury after extended running and other activities. They may also have plantar fasciitis if their shoes do not fit properly.

The sports massage therapist will use deep frictions, cross-frictions and stretching. Sometimes treatment can be concluded in one session, but if the injury is severe or longstanding, several short sessions are preferable to one long one. They should be done approximately a week apart, unless an athletic event is coming up. Then, they can be sped up to twice a week or so. Sports massage therapists can treat many injuries well, as long as they are within the scope of their profession.

 When Sports Massage Should Not Be Used 

There are certain injuries and conditions that either make it impossible or unwise for the sports massage therapist to treat the athlete. In these cases, it is best to follow their advice when they suggest medical treatment or a postponement of the massage. The list of contraindications against performing massage is not a short one in any way.

Excessive Bruising

Bruises can get bigger during a deep tissue massage. The injured tissues can be injured more severely. One possible result is a condition called myositis ossificans, in which there is bone growth within the muscle. Myositis ossifcans should also never be massaged.

Muscle Ruptures

Ruptured muscles may still be bleeding when a sports massage would usually be done after a sports event. In this case, massage should always be postponed. In some cases, if the bleeding has stopped, a light massage may help. It takes an experienced massage therapist to know the difference.

Tendon Ruptures

Treatment protocol for tendon ruptures is similar to that of muscle ruptures. If a tendon is ruptured severely, surgery is required and massage should not be attempted.

Open Wounds

If there are any open wounds or cuts, a sports massage must be put off until scar tissue is formed.

Broken Bones

Broken bones are definite reasons to forego the massage and go directly to a doctor.

Burns

A massage will make burnt skin worse, and if the burn is severe it will cause extreme damage to the skin and underlying tissues.

Periostitis

An inflammation of the sheath that surrounds the bone, periostitis will become more irritated with massage.

Infections

If you have infections in your skin or soft tissues, it is not a good time to have a massage. The infection can be spread and at the same time, the pain will get worse.

Anything Questionable

Do not be offended if a sports massage therapist refuses to do a massage with no more reason than that he is unsure of your condition. It is never wise to do a massage when there is any doubt, so if you trust your sports massage therapist, you will know that he is being upfront with you.

That is one reason it is advantageous to know your sports massage therapist well. If you can trust him to refuse treatment when it is contraindicated, you know he is a responsible professional. It is sometimes possible to treat some injuries that occur during a sports event. However, it is never okay for a massage therapist to treat you when it would cause further damage or pain. Be aware of the problems that might occur, and count on your sports massage therapist to fill you in on the rest of the details.

 Sports Massage and Sports Performance 

One of the most compelling reasons for many athletes to have sports massages is to improve their sports performance. The anecdotal evidence for improved performance goes far back into history, and the reputation of sports massage in this regard gains momentum every year. Immediate enhanced performance is the goal of short 10 to 15 minute pre-event and intra-event sports massages. These massages serve many purposes that add up to better performance.

Enhance Circulation

Better circulation will help the athlete’s tissues and organs function at a higher level. The short massage will get things moving.

Warm Up Muscles

Athletes should always do warm up exercises before practices or events. These may include static stretching and a bit of aerobic activity. The pre-event sports massage will also help warm up the muscles even more.

Reduce Excess Muscle Tension

The reduction of excess muscle tension, before an event, will increase your ability to move fluidly, precisely and with agility across the field of play. However, it takes an experienced sports massage therapist to know when to say when. If the muscles are too relaxed, they will not respond quickly to the events of the game. They will be stretched to the point where it is more difficult to contract them on demand. A great massage therapist will keep the pre-event or intra-event massage short and light for this reason.

Relieve Mental Tension

A balance must also be struck between mental tension and total relaxation. To be at the top of her form, an athlete must be alert and ready for anything. The right touch can ease the stress and concerns about the event, while at the same time increasing mental focus, alertness and awareness.

Stimulate Nerves

That athletic quickness is propelled by excitement and a responsive nervous system. That is why the sports massage that stimulates the nerves can increase sports performance. The nerves send instantaneous messages to the body, and with the other benefits of sports massage it responds quickly and accurately.

Prevents Injuries

There is nothing that destroys athletic performance more than an injury. Injury prevention can be a part of any sports massage. By addressing small problems before they progress, the sports massage therapist can resolve injuries before they get any worse. By working with the athlete’s muscles and extending her range of motion with stretches, he prevents injuries that might occur when the athlete gives her all in the event. By helping the athlete focus her mind before the event, he can keep her from making unthinking mistakes. An injury-free season is bound to be a better one than a season marked by strains, pulls and other muscle conditions. The sports massage therapist can use his techniques to improve athletic performance in many ways, just by knowing and understanding the demands of the sport.

 Conclusion 

Sports massage is popular with athletes for a reason. It is helpful in a whole range of treatments for the athlete’s body and mind. It helps him stay well and it increases his ability to perform at his peak for as long as possible. It is no wonder that so many professional sports managers have hired special full-time sports massage therapists to work with their teams. They keep the athletes healthy and may even improve the team’s chances of winning.

If you know all the benefits of sports massage, you can understand the need for the service. You will have available a professional who can help you in a variety of ways. You will feel better, you will be in less pain, you will be more mentally relaxed and focused, and your body will be prepared to prevent injuries.

It is helpful to understand the basics of sports massage so that you can be sure that you are dealing with a responsible, skilled sports massage therapist. You do not have to be able to do the strokes he uses, find the problem areas on your body, or know how to restore your body to normal functioning after an event. The massage therapist will take care of that, and he will work with you to make sure you get the most positive results possible.

Once you decide to have sports massage, it is just a matter of finding the right one for the job. Search for candidates, and then narrow down your list until you come to the best one. After you have explored their education, licensure, insurance, experience, knowledge base and references, you can make a sound decision.  This choice can have a major effect on your performance, your career and your health. Whether you are an elite or amateur athlete, a recreational athlete, an exercise enthusiast, or just someone who works very hard, sports massage can improve your life dramatically.

  Resources 

Early American Manual Therapy: The Art of Massage

http://www.meridianinstitute.com/eamt/files/kellogg/kelcont.html

New York Times: It Hurts, But Is It Worth It?

http://www.nytimes.com/2008/12/18/health/nutrition/18fitness.html

Pacific College: Benefits of Sports Massage

http://www.pacificcollege.edu/acupuncture-massage-news/articles/573-benefits-of-sports-massage.html

Health Psychology Home Page: Massage Therapy

http://healthpsych.psy.vanderbilt.edu/Massage_Therapy.htm

Bodywork and Massage Source Book

http://www.scribd.com/doc/9659/Bodywork-and-Massage-Source-Book

Bureau of Labor Statistics Occupational Outlook Handbook: Massage Therapists

http://www.bls.gov/oco/ocos295.htm

Massage and Bodywork: Deep Tissue Massage

http://www.massageandbodywork.com/Articles/FebMar2005/deeptissue.html

eHow: Sports Massage Therapy

http://www.ehow.com/video_2280579_overview-sports-massage-therapy.html?cp=1&wa%5Fvrid=019a5f18%2D7fad%2D4a6c%2Dbc45%2D50e2b2c834db&pid=1&wa%5Fvlsrc=continuous

4 Responses to “Sports Massage”

  1. hamstringsrus October 17, 2012 at 4:05 pm #

    Well said !

  2. Nice, and very thorough post. Gives people who have never experienced, or known about sports massage a lot of good information. The best sports massage therapists are athletes themselves, and understand what it is like to go through training and to play a sport, deal with athletic injuries and working to recover as quickly as possible to get active again. Myofascial release is also a highly effective modality used by therapists, mostly in the recovery/healing aspect of sports massage. I also utilize a lot of self-care training and corrective exercise techniques within my practice to educate my clients on what they can do on their own for maintenance in between massage sessions.

  3. Tara July 18, 2013 at 12:19 pm #

    Thank you so much for this! All the info I was looking for in one place.

  4. Chesa October 9, 2013 at 11:16 am #

    I am a licensed massage therapist and this is the area that gets my heart to racing “sports massage”. One reason is because I feel the human body is so fascinating, and also because being a former athlete myself I think this is a great addition to an athlethe’s training regimen. I am so interested in learning all that I can about sports massage so that I can be the best Sports Massage Therapist in my area. This article was GREAT!

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