Sports massage is designed to enhance athletic performance and recovery by using a combination of very fast-paced rigorous strokes that includes the following massage modalities: friction, vibration, rocking and stretching to help flush out muscle tissue. This particular application of massage and stretch techniques to the muscle and connective tissues helps to enhance the athlete’s performance. It increases range of motion, increases flexibility and relieves muscle soreness. It assists in injury prevention and promotes faster recovery from both training and injury.
Sports massage can be useful to an athlete during a pre-event training, post-event, and injury treatment. Pre-event massage can be applied a day before the actual event in the therapist’s office, or at the performance site. The athlete usually remains fully clothed. Fast-paced and stimulating, it helps to establish blood flow and to warm up muscles. Post-event massage can also be applied up to a day after the event in the therapist’s office where the athlete does not have to remain clothed, or on site the day of the event. The intent here is to calm the nervous system and begin the process of flushing toxins and waste products out of the body. Post-event massage can reduce recovery time, enabling an athlete to resume training much sooner than rest alone would allow. When an athlete sustains an injury, skillful massage therapy can often speed and improve the quality of healing.