How Beneficial Is A Massage After Exercise?
Whether you exercise in the gym, swimming pool, cycle, run or practice martial arts; you need to find ways of healing stretched and damaged muscles. Your muscles can also get very sore and stiff, which may inhibit your training for the next few days or even weeks. For this reason it is advisable to find the best method to soften your muscles and release the tension of intense exercise. Massage therapy has undergone a great deal of scientific research over the years and is now proven to be highly beneficial as a complementary therapy for your general wellbeing. It comes as no surprise that most leading sports personalities take a massage after strenuous exercise, as the following research helps to prove.
A study on the effect of massage after strenuous exercise by the McMaster University and the Buck Institute for the Research on Aging proved that the muscles massaged showed reduced levels of the proteins tumor necrosis factor-alpha and interleukin-6.The reduction of the amount of these proteins was conclusive scientific evidence that massage reduces inflammation, as an increase of these proteins can lead to heavily inflamed muscles. The research also found that there was an increase in the amount of PGCI-alpha, a chemical that helps cells to mend and muscle fibre to gain strength. This chemical helps prevent inflammation and muscle damage as both can be caused by muscle fibre tearing. Additionally, massage induces the release of endorphins, essential for pain relief after you have quite literally stretched yourself to the limit.
This is pretty strong evidence for the physical benefits of taking a massage to reduce the effects of strenuous exercise. The reduction of inflammation, muscle damage and pain contribute to your all round wellness after heavy exercise or intense sports activities. Proper relaxation and repair is essential to your body-building or fitness cycle, and will enable you to reach new peaks of physical performance.