The weather is getting warmer and the sun is out. Meanwhile, lockdown restrictions are easing and many people are choosing to get active and participate in outdoor activities. Are you in a football league? Going swimming or planting your garden? With an increase in activity comes many benefits of increased strength, better mental health and improved joint mobility. However, there is also a higher risk of injury. The last thing you want is to injure yourself and become restricted during the summer months.
That is where massage therapy fits in according to Ella Proven, our experienced massage therapist in Christchurch, Dorset.
“Massage therapy can be an effective form of self-care to help anyone recover from an acute or ongoing injury, as well as help prevent future injuries.
Massage therapy can:
Decrease Swelling and Inflammation
In the summer months, the increase in heat and humidity can lead to an increase in swelling and inflammation. Heat can change the amount of fluid in your joints. This can particularly affect people with arthritis or individuals who are prone to swelling. Massage therapy can help reduce swelling in joints and limbs. It can also decrease the pain and symptoms associated with inflammation.
Optimal Adaptation to Exercise
If you are a runner, athlete, or enjoy working in your garden, summer is the time to maximise your strength and endurance gains.
To prevent injury and optimise your body’s ability to increase its’ strength and endurance, massage therapy can:
- Improve blood circulation
- Reduce post-exercise soreness
- Decrease exercise recovery time
Manage and Reduce Pain
Chronic pain is prevalent throughout the UK. More than two fifths of the UK population experiences chronic pain.
Massage therapy is effective in reducing and managing chronic pain by:
- Decreasing pain responses
- Minimising the occurrence of tension headaches
- Producing a relaxation response and improving sleep
- Reducing muscle tension
Increased Joint Range of Motion
Flexibility and range of motion are important to maintain throughout the year. Unfortunately, a lack of flexibility may become even more apparent in the summer. You may notice that your body is stiffer than you realised or remember.
Massage therapy has been shown to increase joint range of motion and improve the flexibility of muscles.
Decreased Injury Recovery Time
Getting back to activity post-injury is the ultimate goal. No one wants to spend their entire summer trying to recover. Massage therapy can reduce injury recovery time and help you get back to regular activity. Mechanisms behind this include:
- Pain management
- Improved blood flow to injured tissue (removal of metabolic waste and increased oxygen uptake)
- Prevention or reduction of tissue adherence and contracture (good scar formation)
- Restoration of range of motion
- Relaxation of compensating muscles and structures
The benefits of massage aren’t exclusively for the summer. Consequently, getting regular massage promotes year-round health and reduces the effects of stress and injuries. Massage therapy can be used for preventative medicine as well as for pain management and injury recovery. If you are unsure if massage therapy is right for you, call or email the clinic and Ella will be happy to answer any questions you may have.
Ella Proven is an experienced Sports Massage Therapist at Bridge Health & Wellbeing in Christchurch, Dorset. She began her career with a four-year bachelor’s degree in Kinesiology from the University of Toronto, going on to complete a diploma in Massage Therapy. Her experiences include working within a chiropractic clinic, a women’s hospital and private massage therapy clinics.
Our friendly team of experts are here to help you get better, build strength and feel happy and healthy in your mind and body.