January 22, 2015

Have you ever wondered when massage should fit into your training or workout schedule? Or thought “Naw, I don’t need a massage, I have my trusty foam roller, tennis ball, lacrosse ball, etc…?” Well, here are some things to consider.

1. Yes, you should incorporate massage into your workout regime. WHY you ask? When you are on my table, you have a better chance of relaxing into a deep tissue massage than if you are trying to accomplish the same pressure with your foam roller. When you use massage tools, you are inevitably using other muscles to get pressure or to get that stretch. This leads to a less effective self-treatment – you can’t relax into it.

2. WHEN? Non training days are usually the best way to go on this one. That way your muscles have time to regroup, recover, and regain some of their natural tension before you hit your next big workout. If you can’t make it in on a non-training day, next best bet is to see us AFTER you work out. Working out after your massage can lead to injury (mostly) due to a lack of tension in the muscles (We won’t go into sports massage here – that’s a whole other basket of tricks).

3. BUT I HAVE MY OWN MASSAGE TOOLS….. – Sure, a LAX ball or a foam roller is great, but can it tell you when your hip is off? Or when the tension in your muscle is a result of an imbalance? If I had talking massage tools, that would be a money maker! Oh wait….I do, my hands. My hands tell me when your muscles are tight, or when they find that pesky trigger point, or they tell me that your hip is rotated which is making your back tight and tightening up your hip flexors… get it?

There are SO MANY other reasons to get a massage, and to incorporate massage into your routine, but these are just a few.

Melissa Beals is an RMT with Whole Therapy. Melissa works extensively with athletes of all levels with a goal in mind to increase their athletic performance through education and understanding of their bodies. See more about Melissa here.