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Sports therapy and massage in Canterbury

Sports and remedial massage, deep tissue and/or relaxation massage in Canterbury

Massage is a versatile and effective hands-on treatment that provides both physical and psychological benefits. It is a therapy that has been carried out worldwide for many centuries to aid the relief of musculoskeletal problems, and to provide a form of relaxation.

Sports and remedial massage

Sports and remedial massage is for all sports athletes and exercise enthusiasts, as well as people with muscle aches and pains brought on by various activities and the demands and stresses of their jobs and hobbies.

It is an ideal form of body maintenance; therefore, regular treatments are an ideal way of maintaining healthy tissue and homeostasis.

Sports people subject their bodies to extra stress and over-use which can lead to muscle imbalances. This can result in injury, tiredness and poor posture, which, in turn, can have a detrimental effect to training and competition.

For athletes, sports massage is a good addition to training and preparation for challenges and competitions, as it helps to relieve tension and correct musculoskeletal imbalances, resulting in enhanced performance and post-event recovery.

A number of different techniques is used, with each treatment being tailored to your specific needs.

The potential benefits of sports and remedial massage may include:

• Aids injury prevention
• Assists in the breakdown of knots and scar tissue
• Stimulates blood and lymphatic circulation
• Improves flexibility
• Reduces stress and tension (built up through regular physical exercise, repetitive movements, and repetitive positions undertaken in the workplace or during hobbies)
• Improves training and sports performance
• Helps recovery after training and competing
• Provides relief for tired, aching muscles
• Assists recovery after injury

People who take part in sports on a regular basis can greatly benefit from regular sports massage work. It is ideal for ongoing body maintenance and rehabilitation (pre- and post-event). Many clients choose to have monthly sessions, and then increase the frequency of sessions depending upon their specific needs. For example, in a lead-up to a marathon, the frequency of the sessions may be increased, as the volume and intensity of training also increases.

Our Massage Therapists have worked closely with our Osteopathy/Physiotherapy team and regularly work with high performance athletes; however, you do not need to be an athlete to benefit from a sports and remedial massage: many of our patients are not from sporting backgrounds—several are, in fact, elderly clients who enjoy the benefit of loosening up their tight muscles.

Techniques used:

The different methods used by our therapists include:

• Soft and deep tissue
Using different movements with the hands and elbows while applying soft or hard pressure to assist the warming up and relaxation of muscles and connective tissue, as well as identifying problem areas.

• Deep friction
For specific areas such as scar tissue and tight, knotty bands of muscle.

• Soft tissue release (STR)
An advanced technique that involves applying specific pressure, while simultaneously stretching a muscle, in order to break down and release adhesions.

• Muscle energy technique (MET)
A procedure that is used to stretch and strengthen muscles, which includes the active participation of the person.

• Neuromuscular technique (NMT) (trigger point therapy)
Treats a specific tender point, which refers pain to other parts of the body. Deep pressure is applied to this point for a length of time, resulting in a response from the central nervous system—providing relaxation and reduced pain.

• Myofascial Release (MFR)
Fascia has been described as the largest system in the human body because it touches all other structures (Pischinger 2007). It is a connective tissue that surrounds every other structure in the body including bones, joints, organs, ligaments, tendons and muscles. Fascia tissue is affected by injury, trauma and poor posture.
MFR is very different from other massage methods as it is a slow, gentle process with sustained pressure moving through fascial restrictions to relieve pain and allow the fascia to move more freely.

• Tapotement
Quick and rhythmic movements aimed to stimulate the muscles and surrounding tissue. Tapotement is often used for preparing muscles for competition or preventing unwanted relaxation of the body.

• The Rossiter System
An alternative form of stretching the connective tissue to help relieve pain and discomfort.

Although sports massage therapists are not trained to diagnose, our team has the advantage of on-hand Osteopaths/Physiotherapists, who they can consult should they have any concerns. This is especially beneficial, since many clients present with niggling aches and pains—which may or may not be suitable for sports and remedial massage, or may need to be overseen by one of the Osteopathy/Physiotherapy team.

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