Anew You Massage: The Ultimate Wellness Spa
The dream of any athlete, fitness instructor and possibly most people's dream:
Being at the peak of your performance.
Sport Massage is the way to rejuvenate your tired and sore muscles after effort or event.
Do you practice these sports: cycling, horse back riding, skiing, tennis, rock climbing, running, hiking, soccer, snowboarding, swimming, running? If so, Sports Massage can help better your performance.
If you are interested in a massage to prevent sports injury, address sport-specific concerns, or to help with muscle recovery after sports, consider getting a sports massage.
Taking Care of Lactic Acid through Sports Massage
After any workout there is a production of lactic acid, which, if not taken care of, can result in strong muscles spasms and cramps. A Sports Massage will disperse this lactic acid, increase blood flow and nourishment to the muscle tissues, improve flexibility at the joints (connective tissues), and provide an overall sense of relaxation as well as invigoration, as the muscles feel refreshed.
After a sports massage, you should feel relaxed and not as sore. To be really effective, soak in a hot Epsom Salt bath after your massage. The best time for a sports massage is after a long day in the back country, a long bike ride or trail run or after a race of any kind where you exert more energy than you normally would.
Feel free to read the following article taken from Massage Magazine
"Massage Gives Cyclists the Competitive Edge"
Cycling results in a unique set of aches and pains due to the aerodynamic position used to be more efficient, trying to cheat physics whenever possible; this is what you think about when you're the motor: "I am in good condition, but early season and challenging rides like this can be a wake-up call for the muscles used in cycling."
Classic symptoms of an early-season ride, combined with the weight of the helmet, made for a tired, stiff neck. Triceps are sore, too. Held in a tuck position, tender triceps and wrists absorb the road chatter and vibrations through the bike. Then, there is the lower back. Last on the list are the glutes and legs, the pistons that transfer the power to the bicycle.
Holding his wrists and hands in a stationary position, the cyclist keeps his fingers flexed and wrists extended; therefore, the extensors and flexors of the arms, wrists and hands are common points of stress on the cyclist's body.
Holding his wrists and hands in a stationary position, the cyclist keeps his fingers flexed and wrists extended. While maintaining a forward-bent position, his lower back and arm muscles work to support his upper body, remaining in a constant isometric (characterized by equality of measure) state. Due to this unique linear positioning of a forward motion with the body in tight alignment, specific areas of a cyclist's body are prone to injury.
The extensors and flexors of the arms, wrists and hands are particular problem areas. Ischemia, a temporary blood deficiency, can affect the finger flexors as well as the wrist extensors. Moving down the body, the hip and knee area, including the hamstrings, quadriceps, abductors and gluteals, often experience tightness. The ankles and calves are susceptible to muscle pulls, strains and tears.
Finally, constant strain being placed on the lower back by the cyclist's forward-bent position can result in injuries to the trunk flexors, lumbars and sciatic nerves. And because cycling relies so heavily on a forward plane of motion, the muscle groups not involved in this movement can easily become tightended and shortened, leading to other problems that massage can address.
The neck can really take a beating having to hold up the head for hours at a time on the bike.
Equipment-induced injuries are also prevalent among the cycling population. Even just sitting in the bike saddle for extensive periods of time can cause ischial bursitis, or inflammation of the bursa where the ischeum meets the sacrum.
Furthermore, a saddle position that is too high can result in strains to the Achilles tendon, calves, quads and glutes, while one too far forward can produce anterior knee pain.
Stretching plays an important role in keeping the cyclist's muscles healthy.
If the wear and tear of sitting on a bicycle were not enough, any cyclist could tell you the toll his body takes when he falls off.
7 COMMON BICYCLING INJURIES
1- Numbness in the hands and fingers: Among experienced cyclists who already know that they should change their hand positions frequently, numbness is most likely a manifestation of thoracic-outlet syndrome, cause by the rounded-shoulder posture used by many cyclists.
2- Piriformis syndrome: The proper adjustment of the bicycle is critical to prevent this problem, which severely limits range of motion and stability during cycling.
3- Patellar tendinitis: This is an overuse syndrome occurring above and below the patella, and frequently involves inflammation or a tear to the quadriceps.
4- Cramping: Cramps can occur in may muscle below the waist, but are preventable with PNF stretching, proper hydration and close monitoring of calcium level. Treated with ice, compression and myofacial release.
5- Shin splints: This is an inflammatory overuse condition affecting the anterior tibialis for as mush as its entire length. Results most often from incorrect biomechanics during cycling. Responds well to pre- and post-workout stretching. During the acute state icing is recommended. Corrective work includes transverse fiber friction where the therapist applies moderate tension and pressure along the body of the muscle during an active movement from full contraction to full extension.
6- Knee injuries: cycling is supposed to be knee friendly, but only if the bike is set up properly. For example, if the seat is too far forward or too far back, the direction of force is not directly over the ball of the foot. This can result in anterior and posterior knee pain. Likewise if the pedals and cleats are not properly aligned, knee injuries are likely to occur. Another common cause of knee pain is riding in too low a gear. Even though the pedaling action involves a closed kinetic chain (hence no impact), a gear that is too difficult can place too much stress on the knee joint.
7- Collarbone injury: It takes about 14 pounds of pressure to break this bone, and it takes about 4 weeks to heal. Scar tissue need to be broken up by using deep transverse friction.
Competitve cyclists, as well as weekend warriors, benefit from the many positive effects of regular massage therapy. Massage keeps these athletes relaxed, pain-free, limber - and on the road.
3 PHASES OF MASSAGE
As with most sports-massage routines, massage for cyclists can be broken down into three distinct phases: Maintenance, Pre-race and Post-race
A- MAINTENANCE: Maintenance massage helps keep the cyclist tuned up and prepared for his next race or hard workout. By helping to maintain proper fiber, tendon and ligament function, massage further speeds post-ride recovery. Done regularly, it allows the athlete to rest more comfortably as well as train sooner with less pain and fatigue, which leads to greater flexibility, increased strength and fewer injuries.
B- PRE-RACE: Invigorating warm-up improves circulation and helps break up adhesions. As a goal during a pre-race massage is to warm the muscles, heated compresses and cross-fiber friction, tapotement, percussion, vigorous effleurage and petrissage, or jostling can do the trick, as well as superficial, vigorous, rapid strokes in order to stimulate the muscles.
C- POST-RACE: Post-race work generally returns muscles to a relaxed state after competition in a relatively short time. It also allows the cyclist to return to his next ride fresh and strong: By flushing muscles of waste products produced during the ride and stimulating fresh blood flow to the muscles, it helps prevent a delayed onset of soreness, undue fatigue and even insomnia.
In contrast to invigorating pre-race strokes, slower and deeper long strokes, stretching and trigger-point work are applied.
HOW MUCH IS ENOUGH?
While a recreational-level cyclist might do fine with one massage session a month, the more serious cyclist probably has greater need.
For a pro and sport level, a deep-tissue massage two day before the race, after the event, and once a week beyond that for maintenance. Deep tissue work should be done before a day off or before the day of an easy spinning.
Sports-massage therapists also advise incorporating stretching, including both static and PNF, into any work on competitive cyclists. Though by alternating resistance stretching with passive stretching, PNF provides an even deep stretch than static.