9 Top Benefits of a Sports Massage

Sustaining a sports injury is possibly every athlete’s worst fear. Not only are they likely to be very painful, they can also impair performance, hold up any training schedule and can often be difficult to treat.

Dealing with the pain from a sports injury can be tiring and frustrating. There are several options with regard to treatment, but one that is becoming increasingly popular is sports massage. As well as relieving pain, it is also reported to have several other beneficial effects for athletes. Sports massage can be enjoyed before and after any performance, as part of a training schedule or as part of a rehabilitation plan following an injury.

sports massage

What is Sports Massage?

A sports massage is a type of massage therapy. Using deep tissue techniques, the aim of this type of massage is to reduce tension in the muscles to ease pain and discomfort. The title might imply it is only for sports people, but it is in fact a massage that’s available to everyone.

It’s used to treat a range of conditions, for example:

  • Whiplash
  • Headaches
  • Back pain
  • Repetitive strain injuries
  • Injuries to the muscles and joints, such as strains and sprains
  • Tennis and golfer’s elbow
  • Pain related to poor posture

Techniques Used in Sports Massage

Many techniques and movements are used during sports massage. They include:

  • Swedish style massage
  • Petrissage – kneading
  • Effleurage – stroking
  • Friction
  • Compression
  • Vibration
  • Gliding
  • Percussion
  • Tapotement – rhythmic striking
  • Stretching
  • Trigger points

The Benefits of Sports Massage

There are many reported benefits of sports massage, whether you are a pro golfer or an athlete. The following list includes benefits based on observation and experience.

1. Relaxation

During a sports massage, your parasympathetic system is activated. This system is responsible for the workings of your body. A massage helps you to relax, which brings many other benefits.

benefits sports massage

2. Stress Relief

A massage reduces the rate at which your body produces stress hormones. Low levels of stress are important if you want to reduce illness and injury.

3. Reduced Blood Pressure

During and after a sports massage your less stressed, less tense, and therefore, your blood pressure is also going to be reduced.

4. Improved Circulation

Because your muscles are relaxed after a sports massage, it allows the delivery of nutrients to your muscles.

5. Reduced Muscle Soreness

Have you ever experienced DOMS? Otherwise known as Delayed Onset of Muscle Soreness, it’s how your body feels a few days after a vigorous workout. A sport massage helps to reduce this pain by flushing waste products from the tissues of your muscles and letting them relax and repair.

6. Reduced Injury Time

A sports massage helps muscles, ligaments, and tendons that are injured heal in the best possible way. It helps to guide new growing tissue and ensure a top quality repair. Unwanted scar tissue is also reduced.

7. Increased Lymph System Activity

Your lymph system is very important for collecting excess fluid, returning it to your blood and to help you fight off any unpleasant illnesses. It works tirelessly to flush your body of all its toxins.

8. Improved Movement

Sports massage lengthens and stretches muscles, thereby increasing movement in your joints. The levels of synovial fluid inside the joints also increases, resulting in pain free and smooth movement.

9. Improved Performance

A sports massage increases performance for anyone who likes to keep active or participate in sports. When muscles are in top condition, you’re able to run faster, swim further, jump higher, lift heavier, walk longer, win F1 grand prix` and maybe even improve your golf swing.

As you can see, there are numerous benefits to having a sports massage. Why not get one today and feel good all over?

About the Author

This article was written by Niall Hally of Village Physiotherapy and Sports Clinic. Niall’s physiotherapy clinic specialises in Sports Massage.