When looking to increase your athletic performance there’s a lot to be said about pre-game massages. Massage therapy, in general, carries numerous benefits from better mental health to muscle recovery. Getting one before a game can help your muscles to loosen up for maximum flexibility while putting you in a good state of mind to tackle the challenges ahead. This sort of massage though requires a specialist masseur is you expect to get the most benefit from it. Professional massage therapists like Adam Harris can provide a range massages including pre-event massages.
What is a pre-event massage?
A pre-event massage can be performed anywhere from two days to right before an event. Usually, it is administered directly before the event. These types of massages are shorter than others, usually only 10-15 minutes and can be done as part of a warm-up. if you’re doing a warm-up it’s best to do the massage first. The relaxing effect of it will loosen up your muscles allowing for better stretching and more flexibility.
This massage can be great for helping an athlete to relax and relieve any tension in the muscles. Greater elasticity in your muscles will mean less risk of an injury during the game. The therapist wants the athlete to leave the massage feeling fresh, not tired and lethargic. The closer the massage is to the event the less invasive it should be.
The benefits of a pre-event massage
- Increased blood flow – massage therapy help to stimulate the flow of blood through your body, carrying important nutrients through your body while removing toxins that can inhibit muscle recovery. The therapist does this through deep brisk moves to draw blood to the important areas the athlete will use most. This will also aid with recovery later. A greater flow of nutrients through the body will speed muscle recovery and help decrease post muscle pains. This can mean the difference between a good night’s sleep and not.
- Greater muscle mobility – any activity that requires a lot of movement, like a hockey game, can be improved through greater flexibility. Lose and flexible joints make an athlete more limber so they are quicker to respond and can make quick movements with less chance of an injury like a pulled muscle. However, if speed is the goal, which of course it is in hockey, the massage should be done no less than an hour before a match. Muscles that are a little too relaxed will respond more slowly so use this with caution.
- Better mental outlook – massage therapy is naturally relaxing and can help overcome stress or pre-event jitters. Use the pre-event massage as a chance for a pep talk to get the athlete ready for the event. The therapist should be speaking encouraging words to the athlete to put them in a good state of mind and feel enthusiastic about the match ahead. Athletes and non-athletes alike can benefit from this.