Massages are just great, they feel good, they relieve tension, they are highly beneficial, very soothing, sometimes painful but with that hurts so good feeling! Get a great massage done by just the right person and you literally come pretty close to what heaven must feel like!
On the other hand, using a massage therapist regularly can cost quite a bit. Yes the benefits far outweigh the costs – so let’s talk about why you need it, and what you can do to keep your muscles pliable and in tip top shape without the hefty price tag!
Your muscle tissue is prone to developing what are commonly referred to as “knots”, or muscle adhesions, or trigger points. (You know, those “tight” spots you feel when someone massages your back . . . those are “knots”!) Not only do you get them in your back, but you can get them in spots all over your body, from your calves and legs, even into your arms, hands and feet.
The jury is still out as to what exactly these “knots” are or what causes them. Some say they are simply muscle fibers that tend to tighten up in certain areas of the body, others think different. What we do know is that these knots respond to pressure. Once under pressure and some cross friction, they seem to break up. Once the knots are gone, you will have improved movement throughout the muscle tissue.
Why do you need to clear up these adhesions?
Clearing up muscle adhesions will improve mobility, and cause significantly less stress on your joints. You might be surprised to see many aches and pains just disappear after some solid soft tissue work! Beyond that, the imprtant factor is injury prevention due to having more pliable muscle tissue. If you move better, you look better. All of the aforementioned are huge benefits to soft tissue therapy to improve the quality of your body.
What is next?
Simple, get yourself a FOAM ROLLER! They are inexpensive, and give you the same benefits of a massage using your own bodyweight as pressure. Mike Boyle refers to the foam rolling as the “Poor Man’s Massage Tool”. They work great, get the job done, and will make a significant increase in your performance and training.
The video below is from Cressey Performance out in Massachusetts – There are many methods to foam rolling, this is a great foam roller series to start off with – so, find yourself a foam roller and give it a shot!
When to add foam rolling to your workouts?
For your workouts, foam roll before you begin and after you finish. Especially if you have serious knots throughout your body. Spend a good 5-10 minutes working out those knots, I guaruntee you will be impressed with the improvements you will see!
Try it out!