Sports Massage for Efficient Recovery Between Cycling Sessions
Have you hit a wall in your training? No matter how much you train, you just can’t seem to improve your timings or distance? The thing that is holding you back might just be the very thing that is making your performance possible – your muscles.
For muscles to perform at their best, they should be well-rested, relaxed and at their optimal lengths. When they are not, it takes so much more effort to get the same level of performance out of them. When they are tense, tight and shortened, they fight and resist against other muscles trying to move in the opposite direction.
Muscle tightness and strain affects a range of performance athletes. In cyclists, tight ITB and quads, besides being extremely painful, affects cycling cadence (hence performance) and lead to knee problems over time. For runners with tight hamstrings, that means that your strides are shorter than they should be. You take three strides compared to someone else who only needs two strides to cover the same distance. More effort, longer time but same distance. In this article, we explore cycling-specific sports massage as a effective and efficient muscle recovery strategy for cyclists.
Sports Massage Improves Blood Flow and Circulation
Sports Massages have the ability to improve your blood circulation. Good blood circulation reduces the risk of illnesses and diseases, and also encourages muscular recovery. Optimal blood circulation is vital for full recovery after a strenuous training session which ensures injury prevention in the long run.
Sports Massage Gets Rid of Lactic Acid which aids Recovery
During a workout, lactic acid is a byproduct produced when your body breaks down food to be used as fuel. A lactate buildup can occur when your lactate production bypasses the rate at which you are using lactate as fuel. This in turn can result in the sour burning sensation mid-cycle which can cause discomfort to cyclists. Massages help to flush out the toxins in your body and improve the circulation of the lymphatic system. An efficient lymphatic system helps to reduce waste in your body – ensuring that you can perform at the top of your ability.
Sports Massage Reduces Muscles Soreness (DOMS)
A massage after your cycling training session would help recovery as it helps to reduce immediate muscle soreness and delayed onset of muscle soreness (DOMS). The sour aching feeling that many of you might be familiar with.
Sports Massage Reduces Recovery Time
A massage post-training would help to reduce recovery time as it would help to reduce muscle tension, soreness and increase muscle length. You are also able to get back on the bike sooner due to the reduction of DOMS.
Related: Want Better Sports Performance?
Sports Massage Reduces Risk of Injury
Sports massages help to reduce the risk of injury as it allows your body to fully recover. Also, massages help to stretch connective tissues and muscles while healing minor muscle tears as well.
A well-maintained body will have a lesser risk of injury. Frequent training sessions while gearing up for a race can be extremely stressful on the body. Injuries may occur as a result of constant training unless proper precautions are taken.
Sports massage is a perfect precaution as it can help the body deal with this stress. A proper massage increases blood flow and lymph fluid, both assisting in the body’s natural healing process, speeding waste removal and general health improvement.
Swelling and inflammation associated with physical activity are also reduced. Scar tissue can also be reduced with regular massages.
Sports Massages are specially tailored for athletes
Unlike a traditional massage that you might usually go for to relax, sports massages are outcome-based and are catered specially for athletes. Your massage therapist is likely to focus on certain muscle groups that are overworked during cycling – targeting specific muscles and tendons.
This is important as you may have certain areas that might need more recovery work as compared to the rest of your body. Your sports massage therapist will be able to identify these problem areas and effectively loosen the muscles in these areas.
Sports Massages are Perfect for Recovery
The benefits of sports massages are undeniable – many professional athletic teams have a masseuse on their team along with physiotherapists and medical professionals.
The major non-medical benefits of massage are evident and this helps reduce injury and recovery. Increased performance, brought by greater flexibility and range of motion also means a reduced risk of injury and faster recovery from injuries as well.
In conclusion, sports massage sessions would be beneficial for anyone participating in physical activities. Enjoyed reading this article?
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