March Madness Sports Massage Therapy
With “March Madness” upon us and with the National Collegiate Athletic Association basketball tournament kicking into high gear, there is bound to be a few twists and turns expected along the way! Along with performance, there is a lot of pressure on the athletes to bring their A-game in every tournament and although they are coming prepared mentally, their bodies are certainly not made of steel and they may experience athletic injuries such as:
- Hamstring Strains: These are tendon or muscle injuries that affect the three muscles behind the knee that makes up the hamstring.
- Shoulder Injury: Such as sprains, dislocations, and strains, which are very common injuries experienced in basketball.
- Hip Strain when the muscles that assist with upward movement of the legs and knees are stretched too far or torn
- Sciatica: This is lower back pain that shoots down to the legs.
- Groin Pulls: These are injuries to the inner thigh muscle.
- Shin Splints: Where the athlete experiences extreme pain down the front of their legs.
- Patellofemoral Syndrome: Knee injuries that damage the kneecap tissues. Also, a very common form of injury associated with basketball.
- Foot and Ankle Injuries: The feet and ankles are perhaps some of the most injured areas in basketball players and need constant attention.
These injuries are quite prone and occur due to the often aggressive and repetitive movements athletes use during tournaments and when practicing in preparation for their games. While some of the injuries may take a while to recover from, most of them are easily manageable and preventable with regular sports massage therapy. Sports massage therapy is designed to maintain the optimum condition of a player, as well as, prevention and minimizing the chances of exasperating an injury.
Having a licensed sports massage therapist in this field is of great importance because they will understand what type of treatment to apply in relation to the injury incurred. They are also qualified in dealing with the health of muscle, the range of movement, tone, symmetry, the balance of muscle and quality of posture to name a few. An incorrect application of therapy in some athletes can aggravate an injury making it worse. A professional sports massage therapist must be able to deduce most of the injuries and the root cause, and be able to manage any pain or discomfort experienced by the athletes.
In conclusion, a regular sports massage is needed for the relief of sore muscles, and is also an important recovery tool that can be used to promote:
- Relaxation by reducing blood pressure and heart rate
- Increase circulation to affected areas
- Remove toxins
- Proper flexibility
- Improve endurance
- Prevent injuries
- Promote flexibility
- Reduce muscle stiffness
A pre-game massage is just as important as it helps to relax the muscle in preparation for the game. This is a way that can be used to determine if an athlete has a pre-existing injury that needs attention and bottom line, help the athletes be winners on the court during championship play!