Relax and Refresh: 2 At-Home Massage Techniques

Massages can work to reduce muscle soreness and even speed up recovery time from an injury. But not everyone can afford a fancy masseuse or even has the time to make an appointment. But in the evenings when you feel those subtle or not-so-subtle aches and pains what can you do? There are actually two key ways to improve your recovery using simple massage therapy techniques. 

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assage therapy can be used on its own, or in combination with acupuncture. Either way, it can help by soothing sore muscles and joints and initiating the production of endorphins in the body. Endorphins are the body’s natural pain relievers. Similar to acupuncture treatment, massage therapy will likely require regular sessions to maintain relief because it also does not provide long-lasting relief.

Use a foam roller: Research has shown that slightly softer foam rollers are more effective. Too much pressure often from a much harder roller can cause muscles to enter into protective mode and actually hold tighter. Avoid pain. A common misconception is that pain is good when it comes to massages but self-massages shouldn't hurt and if they do, you're doing it wrong. 

Use your bare hands: It's important to begin this technique by warming up your muscle tissue. Feel free to apply a lotion or oil and massage in long strokes for about 3 minutes. It's important to apply stagnant pressure to those areas. You're essentially holding a trigger point. Breathe into that point at the moment and let your body relax. You'll start to feel the muscle to release a little bit, press a little deeper until you feel completely soften.