Tag Archives: Massage

Ups and Downs for Massages for Runners

Ups and Downs for Massages for RunnersThere are many benefits and downsides of getting massages for runners or for any athlete. Amongst the upsides are that they can feel great for most people so the relaxation that comes with that can be a great mental benefit after a strenuous run or workout. Many surveys have been conducted of runners’ post run who get a massage compared to those who do not and those who did report reduced muscle tension and a great range of motion which leads to the mental benefit. The recovery times seem to be lower with massages, but it is hard to say if it is just a placebo effect or something real. Either way, it can be a great way to increase blood flow which theoretically should allow nutrients to get to muscles more efficiently and allow the body to get rid of waste easier as well, which would make the perceived effect make sense.

While the upsides of a massage have been discussed extensively in the literature and through various reports, there are some downsides that should not be overlooked. For one, the cost can be high if you are hiring a professional. This should always be a key consideration in whether or not to make the investment- the expected return on the cost. Also, as stated before if it is just a placebo effect then it really may not be worth it, especially if you can find something else that gives you a similar impact. In fact, Dr. Justin Crame of McMaster University says that there is not really much strong evidence to support the conclusion that massages help recovery or feeling better after a run. There are many claims floating about dating back to various “experts” and even ancient times, but nothing that has really been showing through rigorous scientific study. There are many studies out there but they are not of strong scientific design or they are very small in terms of people included so they cannot be generalized or really even used to describe any effect.

By applying pressure to tissues as you do in a massage, the tissue can soften so that clenched muscles can, in turn, relax according to a kinesiology professor from Auburn. She does not buy the notion that toxins, etc. can be removed from the body because of massage, but she does see the difference in muscle relaxation.

Ultimately the jury is still out on whether or not massages can help drive recovery or if they are just an amusing nice to have. More robust studies are really the only thing that can solve the debate, but true randomized controlled trials with large enough samples sizes can be expensive to run. Also, with massages, control groups are a bit hard since it is easy to tell who is and is not getting a massage. Despite these challenges, it is still possible to create strong scientific studies for us to gain a better understanding into whether many athletes are actually helping their bodies or just buying into a fad.

Picture Credit: KeithJJ

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Why Men Should Get Massages

Why Men Should Get MassagesIt is a great stigma that massages are more of a feminine activity or leisurely pastime. There are actually many reasons why the male massage is severely underrated by our society. It can actually help treat ailments, for one. This is usually the case because massages can help reduce muscle fatigue and increase blood flow throughout the body. It can lead to relaxation of the muscles and reduces the risks of tightening and the sequelae known with that, especially in middle-aged and older men. Massages can also help stop injuries from sports by increasing the flexibility of muscles and allowing for optimal healing as the increased blood flow can lead to better transport of nutrients and other materials to areas that need to be repaired. On the flip side, the flow can also lead to a quicker removal of byproducts made by the cell which needs to be removed from the body.

Massages also improve wellbeing in other ways. They can help reduce stress, get rid of anxiety, and improve upon stress levels. In general, people who get massages tend to feel better and happier than their counterparts who did not get massages. According to Men’s Health magazine, there are also notable physiological changes that go with men who get regular massages. For one, their blood pressure levels tend to be significantly lower than those who do not get these massages. They also have fewer downstream comorbidities including kidney failure and heart failure.

It can be hard to find the time to actually get massages during our busy lives, but once you find the time you will find that it is well worth it. People who get regular massages report higher efficiency in work and other things they do, often to the point where the time spent on the massage is easily made up for elsewhere. It is also great for morale as treating yourself and taking care of your body is important. Combine massages with meditation and you can really get a holistic rejuvenation experience in terms of mind and body.

The great thing about massages is that they are growing in popularity as people fully appreciate the upside and what is the really minimal downside. More and more massage services are cropping up across the country to really meet every need. Whether you want someone to come to your house or you want someone where you can go to a professional setting, there are many, many options available. If you are interested in finding a good masseuse in your area check out reviews online- that is usually a pretty good bet at finding a decent professional. From there it is really about your personal relationship and what works best for you so don’t be discouraged if you don’t find someone you like on the first try. Different masseuses practice different types of massages so they have different techniques and styles and people getting them will have their own preferences. Eventually, you will surely find someone who meets your needs and helps you really relax the way you should.

Picture Credit: ElvisClooth

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Cupping Massage Is Still Popular

Cupping Massage Is Still PopularIf you’ve not heard or seen cupping massage, you’re in for a treat as this ancient method of massage is a very modern day popular treatment. People have been using cupping massage for thousands of years. Its purpose is to treat pain and injury as well as optimize certain areas of the body for physical performance. Today’s audience looking for anything to alleviate problems and increase performance fell upon cupping massage when celebrities started spotlighting the technique.

As soon as the public saw the circular red marks caused by cupping massage on the bodies of the rich and famous, the fad factor went through the roof. It still took cupping massage a while to win over as a certified practice but the proof of its success was in the performance. When star athletes, including the Olympic athletes, started showing off what cupping did for them, the word was out and the meteoric rise of popularity started and hasn’t stopped.

Cupping massage is a simple concept but a very specialized skill. One uses regular sized cups made of clay, bamboo, glass, and other materials and places them over an affected area that needs attention. The cup is heated and causes a suction action that stimulates the tissue beneath. Effects include the increase in circulation and neural stimulation. Any injuries then receive more nutrients to repair the damaged tissue and for athletes in specialized sports can get tissue enhanced safely and naturally.

Many will swear by cupping massage and that word of mouth is a major part of its popularity. People see friends and family improve and that’s enough of a selling point to them. Practitioners of the process are now required to have certification and you’ll find most working in conjunction with chiropractic and acupuncture. For those reticent to use pharmaceuticals, cupping therapy is an alternative they pursue. It’s always best to consult a doctor before undergoing any treatment. If your doctor is familiar with the field of cupping massage they may have a professional they can recommend thus making it easier for them to follow your progress in conjunction with your regular medical treatments.

Once all the elements are in place, you’ll be with a professional practitioner of cupping therapy and they’ll guide you through the prep and follow through. It can cause the skin to become discolored for days, even weeks, but no damage to the tissue occurs nor is long lasting. Each practitioner may employ one or more cupping techniques from stationary to moving. It all depends on the kind of problems you have and what they feel is the best approach to address the problem. How long the treatments are is another factor. It depends on what the injuries are and for athletes, how rigorous their activities are. Oils and other things might be employed but overall the heated cupping technique is primary.

So cupping massage has proven to be successful for people all over the world and is probably coming to a place near you. Do your due diligence when choosing a practitioner, see if they’re certified, how long they’ve been in business, what the reviews are. You’ll be starting off on a new adventure.

Picture Credit : Katarzyna Białasiewicz

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Benefits of Massage for Men

Massages are typically thought of as something people get just to relax. That is, it’s considered to be a strictly luxury item only purchased when you have some extra cash and spare time. However, there are real, tangible benefits to getting a massage. Men in particular might be reluctant to the idea of getting a massage. But research shows male massage carries numerous benefits that go beyond relaxing tense muscles.

Reduces Stress

The obvious benefit of male massage is its ability to instill a sense of relaxation. However, feeling relaxed goes hand-in-hand with reducing stress levels. By reducing your heart rate, blood pressure, and cortisol levels, massage cuts back on stress and leaves you feeling relaxed. As you can see, this has significant health implications, especially for those who may be at risk for heart disease. Even a brief massage can work wonders for calming your mind and body. And it doesn’t even have to be a full body massage. Just a simple neck or foot rub can do the trick just as well.

Improves Mood

Along with reducing stress, male massage can lower the likelihood of depression. When your overall feelings of stress are reduced, you’re left with an improved mood and higher amounts of serotonin in the blood. That’s quite a bit more beneficial than just getting a knot out of a tight muscle, right? Especially if you find life to be overwhelming at times, massage could be just what you need.

Reduces Pain

Whether you’re an athlete or work at a computer all day, something must be said for how massage can reduce pain, especially for neck and back problems. Whether you have a kink in your neck or a tight lower back, massage techniques can be employed to relax muscles and increase your body’s ability to deal with pain by releasing serotonin. Massage techniques can also be employed on other parts of the body as well to relieve cramping and pain, like in the legs and feet.

Increases Flexibility

If you find that your muscles are too tight or you’re experiencing a limited range of motion, massage can help to improve your situation. Massaging the spot where muscles connect with tendons can improve your range of motion and overall flexibility. Areas where this kind of male massage is usually employed are the knees, elbows, and hip flexors. Even a brief massage can go a long way toward improving how your muscles move.

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Advantages of Massage for Men

Male therapeutic massage is substantially less common in a lot of countries compared to massages for women are; the notion of going for a massage conjures up thoughts of spas and pampering which usually majority of men don’t consider as being very masculine.

This is a shame however as men’s massage has several benefits, many of which are particular to males and could be exactly what they need.

The most can be received through men’s massage by using a experienced professional masseur, nevertheless quite a few men may well prefer to have a massage at home from a partner. In some instances the partner might favor this as well as having a boyfriend or partner going to a massage parlor might spark suspicion in some cases; there tend to be although a good deal of highly professional massage facilities which may appeal for men with a massage focused on relaxation and wellness benefits.

It has frequently been found in studies that males are far more likely to retain tension and anxieties while females are much more likely to discuss them. This means however that males are much more likely to be both psychologically and physically stressed. Irritability and sleep disorder can be connected to nervousness and male massage can easily assist a man to loosen up and ease out stress in the muscles. A relaxing massage may also be very distracting from difficulties and could consequently be ideal for a person when he comes home or on his way home from work or at home prior to going to sleep.

A men’s massage by the male’s partner may not only be exactly what he will feel more comfortable along with but might in addition have other advantages for the relationship. A companion massage may often be sensual in a way that a massage from a masseur can’t be. A massage from a companion may bring the couple closer together and also this may be specially significant for a couple which find it tough to find time to spend together and it helps make the actual time together appear a lot more precious.

Men who operate in really physical jobs as well as men who commute lengthy distances might have specific need for a massage. With physical jobs such as those including a lot of picking up or staying active most of day muscle tissue may very easily become exhausted and possibly weakened. It may be that a person will need a every day massage to assist releasing lactic acid and to loosen up muscles to guarantee that complications don’t expand and they won’t have difficulties the next day. Traumas as well although can be handled with massage although this may be best accomplished by a specialist: an expert masseur will recognize which muscle group to concentrate on for certain problems such as tightness in specific areas that may appear from typical situations elsewhere.

As for automobile drivers these people sit in the exact same position, sometimes for hours on end every day, this lack of activity could be unhealthy for muscles as can holding yourself in a position: which usually might occur when your seat is poorly adjusted. A good therapeutic male massage will once again though help these males who do a lot of driving to carry on in their work without having discomfort.

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