So how does massage help “tired” muscles? 4 Jun 2020
Many clients come to our clinics a few days after vigorous work outs or competing in sporting competition because their legs feel tried or heavy. These clients often book a sports massage, but is their any scientific evidence to explain what is happening in the body during the treatment?
Massage dilates superficial blood vessels and increases the rate of blood flow. In addition if a deeper pressure is used like in sports or deep tissue massage on a healthy adult it improves the venous return. Both of these changes to the blood flow represent a potent means to accelerate healing. For example, it suggests that massage should improve the performance of fatigued muscles. In addition, Goats asserts that massaged muscle fibres display less spasm, an increased force of contraction and enhanced endurance compared with muscles simply rested. Which suggests that massage will assist in the improvement of sporting performance where it has been compromised.
Scull CD (1945) Massage - Physiologic Basis. Archive of Physical Medicine 26: 159-67
Wilkins RW, Halperin MH, Litter J. (1950) The effects of various physical procedures on circulation in human limbs. Ann Intern Med 33: 1232-45
Goats GC (1994) Massage - the scientific basis of an ancient art: part 2. Physiological and therapeutic effects Br J Sp Med 28(3)