Did you know, getting massaged regularly helps to boost your performance, workouts and results? According to Kimberly Dawn Neuman, fitness instructor at Equinox gyms in New York City, “you don’t need to destroy your body to have the body you want. Taking care of it and being kind (to yourself) has its own benefits.” Massage is one way to do just that.
If we’ve peaked your interest and you’re now wondering about how workouts and massages correlate, we’re here to break down this interesting relationship for you. So, how does getting regular massages actually help with your fitness? Here are four major ways:
1. Post-workout recovery
Therapeutic massages help loosen your muscles after an intense workout, which allows repair to be easier. It encourages blood and oxygen to flow which assist with recovery and pliability.
2. Pain of sore muscles
When your muscles ache from an intense workout, massaging and stretching helps flush out the toxins, ease the knots, get the blood flowing. Not to mention that “sweet pain” of pressure and release. In fact, studies have also shown that massages help reduce inflammation and assist with rebuilding of new cells.
3. Performance & flexibility
Regular exercise especially if rigorous strains your muscles, ligaments and tendons and also tightens the fibers under your skin. Massaging your body can help loosen up these fibers so that once you’re back at your workout, your muscles can do what they’re supposed to without much effort, because they’ve had a good chance at replenishing. Without massaging and with regular workouts and age, our muscles get stiff. Massaging however is a way to provide lubrication so that you can reverse some of that flexibility. It is a nice counterbalance.
4. Helps you feel better - mentally
Especially if your workout is rigorous - HIIT, crossfit, intense strength training, running, etc. - you’ll need to balance that out with moments of happy hormones or endorphins. Intense workouts release cortisol as a result of the stress, while massages help to counter this by helping with the release of endorphins.
So instead of pushing your body to the brink like a drill sergeant would, take the self-care approach by mixing up the intensity and routines. The combination between gentle and intense will not only be appreciated by your body and mind, but will also be better received by it. You’ll see better, more sustainable results and quicker!