Massage for Runners
Hey Endurers!! Here’s our Fit Tip for October !!
Went too hard on your last run? Have you ever considered getting a massage? Let’s dig into this…. What are the benefits of getting a MASSAGE? How often should you have a massage? What type of massage is best for runners? What are other options for massage?
A regular massage could be the key to going a little farther on your next run and a major player in muscle recovery. Deep tissue massage, Active Release Technique (A.R.T.) and Swedish Massage are a few types of massage that are best for an endurance athlete. According to my massage therapist, Sara, massage improves blood circulation, stimulates the lymphatic system, and increases joint mobility, flexibility and exercise performance. Everyone can attest to the muscle relaxing and stress relieving feeling of a simple neck or foot massage. Some lesser known benefits include reducing anxiety, relieving tension headaches, improving skin and muscle tone, decreasing pain from arthritic joints and fibromyalgia, and improving mental health just from being touched.
Currently, self massagers have expanded to include a variety of devices that will also get the job done in between treatments. The more common brands of percussive self massagers include Theragun, Hpyervolt, and TimTam. There’s also the Normatec sleeves which are pressurized massage sleeves for legs and arms. These all can be quite pricey. A much more cost effective product is a foam roller. Some of the cheapest and easiest to use products for massaging is: pre-cut PVC pipe from a hardware store, a tennis or racquetball, or a hard rubber lacrosse ball from any sporting goods store - all for under $10.
Studies show that you can reap the benefits of massaging and foam rolling from just one treatment. However, lasting benefits can be achieved from at least monthly massages. Most of these therapeutic visits can be covered on insurance plans if needed.
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