Sports Massage

Benefits of Sports Massage on Health

Sports massage is an excellent choice for athletes as well as those with chronic pain, injury or illness.

Some of its benefits are:

– Pain or Symptom Relief
– Reduced recovery time
– Increased energy and endurance
– Improved mobility and flexibility
– Muscular relaxation
– Improved blood flow
– Reduced inflammation
– Enhanced sports performance
– Improved mood
– Stress and anxiety relief
– Stronger immune function
– Lower risk of injury
– Improved sleep
– Improved tissue elasticity

Benefits of sports massage

This style of massage brings fresh, oxygenated blood to the muscles and other tissues. We use a variety of techniques according to your needs. For instance, the massage techniques used for treating strains, pulled muscles, and tears are different than those used for relaxation. The stroking movements utilised in this therapy stimulate lymphatic flow and reduce lactic acid buildup. They also help remove metabolic waste while increasing the flow of blood and oxygen to your tissues. This allows your body to recover faster from training and perform at its peak. Sports massage aims to improve exercise performance and muscle function.

During a sports massage session, the therapist focuses on the muscles and tissues that are overused and stressed. This practice is widely used in pre-event preparation, injury rehab, and post-workout recovery. Most athletes experience increased flexibility and range of motion, greater endurance, and reduced muscle pain after a massage. Research indicates that even a 30-second session can improve hip-flexor range of motion. This therapy emphasizes healing and prevention of injuries, leading to faster recovery. It’s an excellent choice for athletes as well as for people with limited mobility, chronic pain, or injury.

Benefits of sports massage in more depth

This style of massage promotes an influx of fresh, oxygenated blood to the muscles and surrounding tissues. Sports massage helps break down scar tissue and promote the formation of new healthy tissues. It also stretches and strengthens your muscles, dilates the blood vessels and invigorates the body. Additionally, this form of therapy increases endorphin levels in the brain, which helps to lift your mood. Endorphins promote mental and physical well-being, decrease anxiety and lower stress levels. These factors combined can lead to better day to day wellbeing as well as enhanced sports performance.

A lesser known benefit of sports massage lies in its ability to increase tissue permeability. This allows nutrients and fluid to pass through your tissues more easily. Studies have also found that sports massage may reduce breathing pattern disorders, lower serum creatine kinase post exercise, and decrease DOMS (delayed onset muscle soreness). For example, if it takes you too long to recover from training, get a massage! Your muscles will recover faster and function more efficiently.

This massage style is good for your brain too. After just one session, you’ll feel more relaxed and invigorated. Competitive sports don’t rely solely on physical strength. They also require mental focus and concentration. If you’re stressed or tired, you may not be able to perform at your best. Sports massage can help de-clutter your mind and relieve stress, leading to improved focus. This therapy activates the parasympathetic nervous system, which relaxes your mind and body. It also keeps the stress hormone cortisol levels low while increasing serotonin and dopamine levels.

What are the Contraindications to Massage Treatment?

Massage treatment is non-invasive, relaxing and natural. It is therefore generally considered a safe treatment for most people.

However, there are three types of contraindication:

LOCAL - when massage can be performed but not over the contraindicated areas.
The therapist can massage but not over any areas affected by:

  • Varicose veins
  • Undiagnosed lumps or bumps
  • Pregnancy
  • Bruising
  • Cuts
  • Abrasions
  • Sunburn
  • Undiagnosed pain
  • Inflammation, including arthritis
MEDICAL - when massage can only be performed once medical permission has been granted.
If you suffer from any of the following conditions, massage can only take place once it has been approved before your session in writing by your GP.

  • Cardio-vascular conditions (thrombosis, phlebitis, hypertension, heart conditions)
  • Any condition already being treated by a medical practitioner
  • Oedema
  • Psoriasis or eczema
  • High blood pressure
  • Osteoporosis
  • Cancer
  • Nervous or psychotic conditions
  • Heart problems, angina, those with pacemakers
  • Epilepsy
  • Diabetes
  • Bell’s palsy, trapped or pinched nerves
  • Gynaecological infections
TOTAL Contraindications - do not book a massage if you have any of these conditions:
When you have any of these conditions, please do not book a massage:

  • Fever
  • Contagious diseases, including any cold or flu, no matter how mild it may seem
  • Under the influence of drugs or alcohol-including prescription pain medication
  • Recent operations or acute injuries
  • Neuritis
  • Skin diseases

Does a contraindication mean that treatment cannot take place?

Not always. In fact, massage can be very therapeutic for many medical conditions. However, in the above cases it is best to have advice from your GP.

If you have further questions or concerns, please contact your GP.

“Running 100-mile weeks demands a lot from my body, as such I seek to maintain optimal function of my joints and muscles. Stephen ‘Woody’ is great at maintaining my body to handle the demand as I  train for personal bests. He himself boasts a plethora of athletic achievements and as such he has a delicate understanding of the mind of an athlete. This combines with his theoretical knowledge and hands on experience make him the perfect solution for all my training / racing soft tissue therapy needs. Thank you, Woody. I know I’m in safe Hands.”

Karl Welborn
Team Marathon Road and sponsored Saysky athlete 2021 Abbott’s Masters Marathon World Champion

Function & Fitness, Sports Therapist - logo

Contact us

Stephen Woodus:
+44 (0)7917 416895

Hannah Golightly:
+44 (0)7834 831591

stephen@functionandfitness.co.uk