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Andrea Townsend June 2014

Written By Coastal Integrative Health on June 25, 2014

Massage Helps Prevent Injuries

It's hot outside; like a candle melting in the attic hot. And we are out there just trudging along the same as always. So since it's hot, hot, hot out there, I figured some ‘cold' hard facts about massage and injury prevention would be a great snooze…I meant highly stimulating read for you.

Here directly from the US National Library of Medicine ( I bring you:

The mechanisms of massage and effects on performance, muscle recovery and injury prevention.

Many coaches, athletes and sports medicine personnel hold the belief, based on observations and experiences, that massage can provide several benefits to the body such as increased blood flow, reduced muscle tension and neurological excitability, and an increased sense of well-being. Massage can produce mechanical pressure, which is expected to increase muscle compliance resulting in increased range of joint motion, decreased passive stiffness and decreased active stiffness (biomechanical mechanisms). Mechanical pressure might help to increase blood flow by increasing the arteriolar pressure, as well as increasing muscle temperature from rubbing. Depending on the massage technique, mechanical pressure on the muscle is expected to increase or decrease neural excitability as measured by the Hoffman reflex (neurological mechanisms). Changes in parasympathetic activity (as measured by heart rate, blood pressure and heart rate variability) and hormonal levels (as measured by cortisol levels) following massage result in a relaxation response (physiological mechanisms). A reduction in anxiety and an improvement in mood state also cause relaxation (psychological mechanisms) after massage. Therefore, these benefits of massage are expected to help athletes by enhancing performance and reducing injury risk.

Have fun out there, stay cool and take good care till I see you again,

Andrea Townsend, LMBT

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