Massage, applied skillfully, is the most effective therapy for releasing muscle tension and restoring balance to the musculo-skeletal system. Received regularly this may help athletes prevent injuries, which might otherwise be caused by overuse. A constant build up of tension in the muscles from regular activity may lead to stresses on joints, ligaments, tendons, as well as the muscles themselves.
These muscle imbalances may develop and often go undiagnosed until they are serious enough to cause the athlete discomfort or impede performance. The skilled massage therapist will be able to detect variations in the soft tissues and by using the correct techniques, help the sports person maintain a much healthier physical state.
It may therefore be reasonably claimed that one of the greatest benefits of sports massage is in helping prevent injury.
Contraindications for Sports Massage
There are times when sports massage could be detrimental rather than beneficial to you. The contra indications to massage are:
- A body temperature over 100°F, or feeling unwell
- Acute Traumas – Open wounds, recent bruising, muscle tears, sprained ligaments, contusions, chilblains, burns
- Tumours – Where there is swelling, which is inconsistent with recent bruising
- Diseased blood vessels – Varicose veins, phlebitis, thrombosis
- Infectious skin disease – Bacterial infection, Lymphangitis, Fungal infection, Viral infections, Herpes
- Where you react adversely to massage treatment
- Where your symptoms appear to make advice from a doctor advisable
- Diabetes – not strictly a contraindication but massage has the same effect as exercise on your blood sugar levels so you need to have appropriate medication available