Sports massage is a type of massage that is specifically tailored to sporting injuries or ailments. It is not meant to be a relaxing massage and, indeed, can become quite vigorous at times. Contrary to its name, sports massage is not only utilised by professional sportspeople or people that exercise heavily.
- In my practice I treat patients based on 3 key principles… when, what, and why.
- When should the massage be given? Pre-event or post-event; during recovery; during a maintenance period; or when an athlete suffers an injury that requires rehabilitation.
- What technique should be used? A.R.T., Structural Integration, Craniosacral, deep tissue, circulatory, or just range of motion.
- Why… are they warming up, cooling down, maintaining, or injured.
Every sports massage therapist should know why they are giving the massage, what changes they are trying to create, and the best technique to accomplish these goals. In addition, knowledge of the muscles actions, origins and insertions are key. How can they treat the issues you are dealing with if they don’t know what the muscles do and how their techniques affect them.
Lastly, homework is every bit as important as the massage. If you cannot maintain the benefits of the massage at home, how can you expect improvement or enhanced performance.