Deep tissue massage therapy
Deep tissue massage therapy is similar to Swedish massage, but the deeper pressure is beneficial in releasing chronic muscle tension. The focus is on the deepest layers of muscle tissue, tendons and fascia (the protective layer surrounding muscles, bones and joints).
A study in the Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine found that people’s blood pressure fell after a single 45- to 60-minute deep tissue massage. Additionally, a 2010 meta-analysis in the Journal of Clinical Psychiatry found that massage modalities like deep tissue reduce stress hormone levels and heart rate while boosting mood and relaxation by triggering the release of oxytocin and serotonin.
According to Consumer Reports magazine, 34,000 people ranked deep tissue massage more effective in relieving osteoarthritis pain than physical therapy, exercise, prescription medications, chiropractic, acupuncture, diet, glucosamine and over-the-counter drugs. Deep tissue massage also received a top ranking for fibromyalgia pain. People often notice improved range of motion immediately after a deep tissue massage.
Deep tissue massage is a type of massage therapy that focuses on realigning deeper layers of muscles and connective tissue. It is especially helpful for chronic aches and pains and contracted areas such as stiff neck and upper back, low back pain, leg muscle tightness, and sore shoulders.
Some of the same strokes are used as classic massage therapy, but the movement is slower and the pressure is deeper and concentrated on areas of tension and pain in order to reach the sub-layer of muscles and the fascia (the connective tissue surrounding muscles).
Benefits of Deep Tissue Massage
Deep tissue massage usually focuses on a specific problem, such as chronic muscle pain, injury rehabilitation, and the following conditions:
• Chronic pain
• Lower back pain
• Limited mobility
• Recovery from injuries (e.g. whiplash, falls, sports injury)
• Repetitive strain injury, such as carpal tunnel syndrome
• Postural problems
• Muscle tension in the hamstrings, glutes, IT band, legs, quadriceps, rhomboids, upper back
• Osteoarthritis pain
• Piriformis syndrome
• Tennis elbow
• Muscle tension or spasm
• After a workout or bodybuilding
Sports massage therapy is geared toward athletes of every kind, from world-class professionals to weekend joggers. The particulars of the sports massage technique are specific to the athlete’s sport of choice. Focusing on areas of the body that are overused and stressed from repetitive and often aggressive movements.
Aspects of sports massage therapy are gaining popularity as useful components in a balanced training regimen. Sports massage therapy can be used as a means to enhance pre-event preparation and reduce recovery time for maximum performance during training or after an event. Athletes have discovered that specially designed sports massage promotes flexibility, reduces fatigue, improves endurance, helps prevent injuries and prepares their body and mind for optimal performance.
One of the key benefits of Sports massage therapy compared to other modalities is its ability to target muscle-tendon junctions. A 2010 study in the Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research found that even a 30-second massage improved hip-flexor range of motion. Another study conducted by Margaret Jones, PhD, of the American College of Sports Medicine, demonstrated a notable trend toward decreased muscle soreness in the athletes who received massage either before or after exercise.
For anyone participating in regular physical activity, Sports massage therapy every week or two may be a great addition to your normal regime.
How Does It Work? Techniques
When there is chronic muscle tension or injury, there are usually adhesions (bands of painful, rigid tissue) in muscles, tendons, and ligaments. Adhesions can block circulation and cause pain, limited movement, and inflammation.
Deep tissue massage works by physically breaking down these adhesions to relieve pain and restore normal movement. To do this, the massage therapist uses massage oil and often uses direct deep pressure. Muscles must be relaxed in order for the therapist to reach the deeper musculature.
At certain points during the massage, most people find there is usually some discomfort and pain. It is important to tell the massage therapist when things hurt and if any soreness or pain you experience is outside your comfort range.
There is usually some stiffness or pain after a deep tissue massage, but it should subside within a day or so. The massage therapist may recommend applying ice to the area after the massage.
What Can I Expect During My Visit?
Massage therapists may use fingertips, knuckles, hands, elbows, and forearms during the deep tissue massage. You may be asked to breathe deeply as the massage therapist works on certain tense areas.
In 2002 Michael qualified as a Sports Massage Therapist from the Limerick School of Massage Therapy and has worked with many county and club teams both in hurling and football in the past, as well as in private practice. He is also ITEC accredited in Massage Therapy.
Massage is not recommended for certain people:
• Infectious skin disease, rash, or open wounds
• Immediately after surgery
• Immediately after chemotherapy or radiation, unless recommended by your doctor
• People with osteoporosis should consult their doctor before getting a massage
• Prone to blood clots. There is a risk of blood clots being dislodged. If you have heart disease, check with your doctor before having a massage
• Pregnant women should check with their doctor first if they are considering getting a massage. Massage in pregnant women should be done by massage therapists who are trained in pregnancy massage.
• Massage should not be done directly over bruises, inflamed skin, unhealed wounds, tumours, abdominal hernia, or areas of recent fractures.
Tips and After Care
• Don’t eat a heavy meal before the massage.
• If it’s your first time at the clinic or spa, arrive at least 10 minutes early to complete the necessary forms. Otherwise, arrive 5 minutes early so you can have a few minutes to rest and relax before starting the massage.
• A deep tissue massage may result in muscle soreness or tenderness, which may last a day or two. Your massage therapist may recommend icing any painful areas.
• Drinking water after the massage may help to flush out toxins that are released from muscles and properly rehydrate muscles, which can help to reduce muscle aches and stiffness after a massage.
• Avoid strenuous activity after a massage.
• Stretching can help to prevent muscle aches and pain after a deep tissue massage.
This article give a good overview of deep tissue massage and what to expect at a therapy session “Deep Tissue Massage”
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To book in for Massage Therapy phone the clinic on 085-215 7479