Sports Massage & Soft Tissue Therapy
Sports massage is deep tissue massage aimed at helping people recover from sporting activity and enhance performance. While not a specific type of massage in itself, it is commonly used interchangeably with remedial massage or soft tissue therapy. The latter is defined on Wikipedia as “the assessment, treatment and management of soft tissue injury, pain and dysfunction primarily of the neuromusculoskeletal system”. It encompasses neuromuscular techniques such as muscle energy technique (MET), soft tissue release (STR), positional release, trigger point therapy (TPT), myofascial release, stretching, massage, kinesiology taping, etc..
Remedial massage and soft tissue therapy seek to correct dysfunction and re-introduce balance to the body’s soft tissue functions. It doesn’t just treat the problem; it seeks to eliminate the cause.
Neuromuscular techniques affect the body as a whole by manipulating soft tissue to re-introduce proper communication between the nervous and musculoskeletal systems in order to address the root causes of dysfunction that result in niggling aches and pains. It takes into consideration a person’s lifestyle, medical history and patterns of body movement to help understand the cause of a client’s problems and tailor treatments to their needs. It can be gentle to have a relaxing and therapeutic effect or more focused to address specific issues and injuries.
This wider scope of soft tissue therapy or “sports massage” means it isn’t specifically targeted at enhancing sports performance and is in fact greatly beneficial to people from all walks of life experiencing tension and pain, regardless of whether they engage in exercise and sport.
While I do treat people to aid them in sports performance and during recovery from injury, I also help people who are either seeking relief from the stresses of modern life or from chronic pain and movement discomfort that is encountered through everyday activities; such as sitting at a desk for the best part of a day or a lack of enough physical movement. These techniques also help in managing muscle pain with diseases such as arthritis, fibromyalgia, etc.. Regular treatments help restore the soft tissues (muscles, tendons, ligaments, fascia) to their normal function and generally help the body maintain a state of balance.