A good massage is to your body like skilled kneading is to dough - it softens tight spots and increases the quality of its end product, which in this case, that recovery for you to get back into the fold. Here are four incredible massages that will leave you awestruck at the results.
Although we attribute many things luxurious with the Scandinavians, the Swedish massage, a.k.a. Effleurage is better known for its effectiveness before and after a competition. Consisting of soft kneading strokes and light, rhythmic tapping on the topmost layers of your muscles, it is used to relieve tension from your muscles without causing damage to them the last thing you need before a run. It is also a good post-run recovery tool, supporting and facilitating blood flow while aiding relaxation.
Deep Tissue Massage
Not to confuse this with deep pressure massage, deep tissue massage is ideal after a strenuous run because it is great for easing muscle soreness. As it is a more specific massage targeting certain muscle groups, it can help with any muscle tightness you feel.
It is aimed at the deepest layers of muscles and fascia, and can be pretty intense due to the deliberate and heavy pressure of massage activity. But hey, with the host of benefits you can potentially receive from it, the results speak for themselves.
" A good massage is to a body like skilled kneading is to dough."
Hot Stone Therapy
Unconventional, and not as common in the local scene as it is internationally. This therapy could, however, prove itself to be an effective restoration tool for runners. The way hot stones work is that they are placed on the body, allowing heat to permeate, which encourages muscles to soften.
The combination of heat and deep massage strokes helps to heal damaged tissues, calms the nervous system and reduces pain. If you are an ultra-marathoner who has pushed your body's limit time and again, this therapy could be your perfect after-run respite.
Active Release Therapy (ART)
Another heavy-duty treatment for the aching runner, ART is an intense and rigorous form of therapy where heavy pressure is applied through the practitioners thumbs and fingers to certain areas of the body while moving the surrounding muscles in a variety of motions. The main beneficiaries are locked joints, muscles, tendons, and scar tissues.
ART is also known to help treat the root of the problem, which may or may not necessarily be at the spot where you feel the pain. Like deep tissue massage, you may feel moments of discomfort, but that's to be expected when sores or deeper underlying injuries are being fixed. So if you are in for some authentic results, ART could very well be the massage you need.
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