These three techniques of massage therapy for athletes can promote healing, improve circulation and encourage a greater sense of well-being to enhance the performance of athletes.
Acute-stretching is used by massage therapists to assist the patient with resistance and releasing tense or tight muscles in the back, legs, feet, and/or hands. For an example, the massage therapist may have the client and/or patient lay on their stomach, while the massage therapist bends each leg one at a time, increasing the bend with each deep breath the client and/or patients gives.
This helps stretch both the front and back thigh muscles and can also help the knees as well. If you try this on your own, you may not get the full potential your muscles need because you are using gravity forces and perhaps not breathing the way you should be. If gravity isn’t working against you and your breathing and the therapist gives you instructions to do so, it can help in relaxing the muscles better.
Deep Tissue Massage
The next technique is called the deep tissue massage. With this technique the massage therapist may use little to no lotion at all, because when using any type of lotion or oil on the skin it is hard to sink fingers into the muscle to loosen the knots. When done correctly it should not hurt. This technique is done slowly with deep breathing from both the massage therapist and the patient. This is a great technique to use for those muscles that just have a hard time relaxing and it can be used on the back, legs, arms, feet, and even on the hands.
The final technique is the Swedish Massage. This technique is great if you would prefer more of a relaxing massage, without the deep muscle work, because it feels lighter and can feel great after an intense work out.
These techniques can be very therapeutic and should not be painful. As a patient you must find a therapist that you feel comfortable with, enabling you to relax and breath without feeling anxiety and nervous. Remember to drink plenty of water after your session.