Massage Therapy & the Advantages of Stretching
Typically, a registered massage therapist will always encourage patients to be as active as their condition allows. So, if you’re getting ready to start a new exercise program, we applaud you. However, please remember that preparing yourself for each workout is much better than jumping in full-speed. Here’s why it matters and how to do it.
Advantages of Stretching
Stretching before a workout can improve your performance. Whether you’re getting ready to do some cardio or lifting weights, you’ll likely do better at the activity than if you just started cold. Your muscles work better, allowing you to do your best. Also, your workout will likely be more consistent if you see that you’re getting better at the activity over time. Your registered massage therapist will encourage you as well.
Additionally, the fact that you’re challenging those muscles is reason enough to prepare them. In fact, stretching may reduce your risk of injury in certain cases. That’s especially true if you’re participating in soccer or another activity that constantly requires you to absorb and release energy in your muscle-tendon unit. And, it’s a great idea to have regular sports massage with a registered massage therapist if you’re involved in an intense sport.
Stretching helps you increase your range of motion as well, allowing you to move smoothly through your full range. The blood flow to your muscles is increased, so you’re ready to move into your main workout. Besides, when you make it a regular part of your workout routine, you may even enjoy the ritual.
The Right Ways to Stretch
If you’re seeing a registered massage therapist regularly for sports massage, they’ll likely give you recommendations about the stretching part of your workout. Generally, you need to be mindful about how you stretch.
First, before you stretch, do a bit of light walking for 5 to 10 minutes to warm up your muscles. Then, in addition to or instead of static stretching, where you stretch and hold a position, go for dynamic stretching. Dynamic stretching means that you move through the position slowly and deliberately rather than holding it. Whatever you do, avoid bouncing movements.
Some athletes prefer to stretch after the workout when their muscles are already warm. Stretching afterwards is helpful for anyone working out because it allows your body to shift back into its usual state more gradually rather than suddenly.
Also, make sure you stretch both sides of your body equally. If one side of your body is more flexible than the other, you’re more likely to be injured. By the way, don’t push yourself to the point of pain while you’re stretching. It’s meant to challenge your muscles, not hurt them.
How to Fine-Tune Your Stretching with a Registered Massage Therapist
Are you ready to get active but unsure about how to include stretching that’s right for your body and your activity? Our registered massage therapists at Davie Village RMT can help you develop the best plan for you. They can also help you with sports massage before and after your workout days to relieve sore muscles and tender joints. And, they can help you recover if you have an injury. We’re looking forward to setting you on the course to a healthier, more active you!