What Is Sports Massage?

At Legacies Sports Massage & Chiropractic, this is a question we hear almost daily. What is Sports Massage? How is it different from any other type of treatment? Here is a brief description, and a video below to help answer that question:

Sports Massage with Adryon Hutton, RMT at Triathlon World Cup 2007

Sport Massage treatments are described typically in three general types:

  • Pre-event
  • Post-event
  • Maintenance/Rehabilitative

Pre-event massage is usually done field side just before the athlete competes/trains. The massage is generally performed without lotion and consists of quick jostling movements to joints and musculature with a small degree of stretching. The goal is to increase circulation to the focus muscle groups and mobilize joints. This assists the warm-up process and helps prevent injury when competition/training begins. The treatment is usually brief, stimulating, and not painful and will help build body awareness before performance.

Adryon Hutton, RMT at International World Cup Events

Post-event massage is usually performed at a slower rate using lotion, usually just after an athlete competes/trains (up to two hours post competition). The goal of post-event massage is to encourage circulation and flexibility, and treat or prevent any minor injuries/responses from performance. Post-event massage is part of the cool-down process, and allows the athlete to re-focus.

Maintenance and Rehabilitative massage is typically done at the clinic or training facility between training sessions and competitions. These treatments often include heat or ice modalities, specialized corrective techniques, and deep tissue massage. The goal is to assist healing of current injuries and prevent the onset of chronic injury. Decreasing scar tissue formation, mobilizing joints, restoring muscle flexibility and balance, proprioceptive and strength training, and trigger point release can all be techniques of this type of Sports Massage.

Athlete care is an emerging specialty in the profession of Massage Therapy. Therapists take extensive courses and training post-graduation, and often have advanced certifications.

If you are an athlete, and you’re trying to achieve your top performance, seek out a trained and experienced RMT.  Take a look at our video for a demo on what a Sport Massage treatment looks like!

[pro-player type=’video’ image=’/multimedia/posts/what-is-sports-massage/what-is-sports-massage.jpg’]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KStyF9MLLlc&feature=player_embedded[/pro-player]

Posted by:  Adryon Hutton, RMT is the Assistant Director at Legacies Sports Massage & Chiropractic

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