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What Is A Sports Massage?

What Is A Sports Massage?

Ever had a sporting injury? Or needed a therapeutic massage to cope with muscle tension? To maintain our sports health, we must seek massage therapy.

Sports massage therapists practice a type of occupational therapy. Massage benefits are both physical and mental. 

Sports is such a popular pastime among professionals and amateurs; therefore, stress relief from sports massages is in high demand. Massage therapists are in demand after, and it is a promising career. 

We’ll share the benefits of massage therapy and the best online massage training programs. If you want to launch your sports therapists career, follow our massage benefits and tips.

What is a sports massage?

A sports massage manipulates soft tissues, focusing on tight muscles or muscle fibers causing pain. 

A sports massage is a deep tissue massage that targets deeper layers of muscles and connective tissue. They can be preventative or aid recovery, which involves kneading, joint mobilization, and joint manipulation.

Different types of massage include Swedish massages, deep tissue massages, lymphatic massages, myofascial release, and oncology massages. Each has various uses, and therapists adapt sports massages to each athlete’s needs.

The benefits of sports massage therapy are numerous. From increased blood flow to help muscle strains and ligament tears prevent injuries by improving range of motion.

Sports massages are not limited to athletes, however. Despite the name, sports massages have their uses in post-surgery patients, with physiotherapy and chiropractic. 

It is also beneficial for those with bad posture or someone sitting at an office desk all day. They can feel pain or uncomfortable during the process. However, this means the massage is working, and the long-term effects reduce pain.

Physical therapy often includes massage and bodywork, and an athletic trainer can also do it. A massage practitioner should have a sports therapist education, so they know how to safely massage. To become a sports massage practitioner, you should sign up for a sports massage training course.

What are the different types of sports massage? 

There are different massage techniques, and a training program will teach you how to practice each one.

  • Swedish massage: A Swedish massage includes soft kneading and light tapping on the uppermost muscle layers. It improves blood flow and circulation and is both energizing and relaxing.

  • Deep tissue massages: This type of massage treats musculoskeletal problems using sustained pressure and deep strokes. Deep tissue massages aim at the inner muscle and connective tissue. 

  • Lymphatic massages: These massages stimulate the lymphatic system and aim to drain lymph fluids. Use gentle, rhythmic movements. There is a specific process to avoid trapping lymph fluid anywhere in the body.

  • Oncology massage: Soothing and supportive; this gentle massage reduces stress on the body. 

A registered massage therapist will create a therapy program catered to each individual’s needs. They may include a variety of massage types.

What are the benefits of a sports massage?

The benefits of deep tissue and sports massages are incredible. Sports therapy can help you before, after, or during a sporting event. It is imperative you know how to take advantage of sports massage therapy to improve your physical health. 

Regular sports massage therapy improves circulation and helps with increased flexibility. Increased blood circulation helps your body get oxygen and nutrients to your muscles and supports muscle growth and strength.

A sports massage helps you prevent or recover from muscle injuries. The oxygen and nutrients carried by the blood flow to the muscle tissue can also help a muscle heal after injury or workout. 

Regular sports massages can relieve delayed onset muscle soreness after an intense workout. It reduces recovery time and can help prevent injury.  

Sports massages help reduce muscle tightness, break up scar tissue and increase range of movement. They can also help a ligament sprain, plantar fasciitis, or carpal tunnel syndrome. 

Personal training often dictates that you receive regular sports massages to reduce injury risk. The physiological effects of sports massage therapy can reduce the need for surgical technology in the case of a severe injury. 

Furthermore, it can prevent prolonged effects from an injury, for example, frozen shoulder syndrome from a shoulder injury. Frozen shoulder is the reduced muscle movement or immobility of the shoulder resulting from the injury.

Sports massage therapy can also significantly improve your sense of mental wellbeing as it releases endorphins, and it can also improve your sleep.

Understanding the benefits of sports massage therapy for people is crucial to avoiding or relieving pain, and sports therapy is essential to improve overall physical fitness and wellbeing. 

How does sports massage reduce pain?

Aside from injury prevention, the other benefit of massage therapy is reducing pain. Sports therapy can relieve pain in any skeletomuscular part of the body, and this includes: 

  • Shoulder pain.

  • Lower back pain.

  • Neck pain.

  • Knee pain.

  • Foot pain.

  • Hip pain.

  • Carpal tunnel syndrome. 

  • Tennis elbow.

The effects of massage on the target area can reduce swelling and increase blood flow. A remedial massage aids healing and alleviate pain temporarily. For example, it can help with carpal tunnel syndrome — a numb or painful feeling in the hand and fingers caused by pressure on a nerve in the wrist. 

A deep muscle massage stimulates nerves, preventing pain receptors from sending messages to and from the brain. It relaxes painful muscles and reduces muscle spasms and contractions, and it also reduces nerve compression. For instance, sports massage can assist with sports-related injuries like tennis elbow, a painful condition on the outside of the elbow caused by overloaded tendons and overuse of the joint. 

A certified massage therapist understands the best ways to reduce pain through massage. Training will enable you to become a massage therapist and help reduce chronic pain or pain after a sports injury. 

How often should you have a sports massage?

The frequency of receiving sports massages depends on why you want one. A professional athlete will receive a massage at least once a week, which might increase during athletic training, sporting events, or injury.

An athlete’s performance depends on their ability to recover faster after injury. A sports team might have their own sports massage therapist to aid all their athletes. 

An amateur athlete will benefit from getting massaged regularly. Even if you do not suffer from injury, frequent massages help prevent damaging your body.

There is no limit to the number of sports massages you can have. If you are a reasonably healthy person and don’t do any strenuous activity, you can get one whenever you want. Sports therapy should be a supplement to your training program and physical health. 

Not everyone needs a sports massage, but an addition to general wellbeing, and it does not replace taking good care of your body. Physical therapists diagnose the problem and recommend how often you get massaged if you have recently suffered an injury. 

Some sports massages can have lasting effects for days, weeks, or months. Getting a massage should depend on when you feel you would benefit from one. 

What does a sports massage therapist do?

A sports massage therapist might be anyone in the physical health world specializing in sports massage, and this could include Pilates instructors, a yoga instructor, or a personal trainer. 

A sports therapist runs massage sessions to prevent and relieve sports injuries and chronic pain. They work with professional sports players and amateur athletes. 

A sports massage therapist is not the same as a physiotherapist. The former reduces pain and discomfort by using muscle relaxers and massages, such as a foot massage to target the foot. A physiotherapist teaches you strengthening exercises, movement therapy, and stretches to recover from pain or injury. 

A sports massage therapist provides an initial response to a sports injury. They will work with you throughout your recovery time to improve your range of movement. They will advise on how to reduce injury risk or how to heal an exercise-related injury. 

Responsibilities include:

  • Conducting physical health assessments.

  • Testing joins for their range of movement.

  • Prepare athletes for a sporting event, e.g., taping or strapping an injury.

  • Emergency sports aid.

  • Alleviate pain through massage.

  • Assess athlete’s physical recovery and whether it is safe to return to sports.

  • Suggest additional treatments, if needed.

  • Liaise with coaches and team captains to prevent injury.

  • Work with other healthcare professionals.

A sports therapist usually works within a broader medical team. Often, sports injuries require other additional treatments. As a sports therapist, you must collaborate with other healthcare professionals to plan the best treatment program. 

If you want to embark on a sports massage profession, you should enroll in sports massage courses. Massage therapy careers require the therapist to be qualified and experienced.

How much do sports massage therapists make? 

The Bureau of Labor Statistics occupational outlook suggests that average massage therapist salaries are $43,620 per year. 

The average for all healthcare occupations is $36,780. Sports massage therapist is an incredibly lucrative career. The career outlook is much faster than average, projected to 32% from 2020-2030.

Athletic trainers typically earn $49,860 on average, and a physical therapist can earn $91,010. Sports therapist careers are good stepping stones if you wish to develop into other areas of sports healthcare.

Attending a massage therapy school may also increase your chances of earning a higher wage. 

How to train to be a sports massage therapist? 

Online courses teach you sports medicine, anatomy and physiology, and target deep tissue in therapeutic massages.

You will also need to understand how to use sports massage equipment. You need to know how and when to use different equipment, from foam rollers to hot stones.

There are some necessary skills to become a sports massage therapist. You need to have a personable nature. Sports massage therapists deal with a diverse range of people, so you must have strong interpersonal skills.

Communication skills are also necessary. You might have to convey important information about how to look after a sports injury. You need to be able to communicate clearly and directly. 

You also need to be a sensitive and mature person. The role includes dealing with people’s bodies, and some people can be self-conscious or protective of their bodies. 

A career in sports therapy requires online sports therapy training. You need to take a recognized certificate program to become a certified massage therapist. 

Educational programs cover necessary general health information management, and this includes conducting deep tissue massages. 

How long does it take to become a sports massage therapist?

Sports massage therapy programs can take as little as twenty hours to complete. If you have a health sciences background in healthcare administration or medical assistant, specialization in sports massage therapy will be quicker. 

What online sports massage therapy courses are available? 

There are many training and education courses to learn sports massage therapy.

At Courses for Success, we offer a Sports Massage Practitioner Online Certificate Course. Upon completing this massage therapy training, you will receive a certificate and become a qualified sports massage practitioner. 

The course covers the best sports massage techniques and general health and wellness education, and the course materials are available 24/7, suitable for flexible learning. The course is open to anyone wishing to learn how to become a sports massage practitioner.

By signing up for a sports massage school, you will know the most effective massage techniques to prepare you for your massage therapist career. 

Why Courses for Success? 

Courses for Success offers over 10,000 online courses, all of which aim to help you in your personal development and career progression. Not only that, but you can also study them anywhere and at any time, and take them at your own pace, too.

You don’t need career diplomas or specific experience to get started. From our coding courses and trading courses to design courses and developer courses, every course we offer will help boost your prospects, no matter who you are.

Beyond just the education itself, students will be issued a certificate online after completing each of the learning courses they do. Our online sports massage practitioner courses are no exception and are recognized by industry leaders. You could make a name for yourself by signing up for a Courses for Success short course today.

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