Stretching Is Essential | Zen Massage

Stretching Is Essential

Body Basics

Have you ever seen a cat get up and start moving without stretching? 

If you’ve ever watched a cat you’ll have noticed each time they begin to move they stretch! They listen to their bodies! With busy daily life, we humans tend to ignore our most basic needs.

When we don’t stretch regularly, we overuse, fatigue, shorten and tighten our muscles and the connecting tissues. This leads to decreased circulation, reduced flexibility, and an increased risk of injury or disease. 

Tune-in to what your body is trying to tell you! Notice that compelling feeling to stretch when you wake up? And again, at the end of the day when you’re tired? That is nature’s way of telling you that you need to move! Move more oxygen around your body . . . And yet a lot of us spend our days sitting at our desks barely moving.

Staying flexible as we get older is something we can all work towards. After all, loss of mobility is a slow process that creeps up on you. Many of us don’t recognize it’s happening until our bodies become imbalanced, compensation sets in, and we begin to suffer pain and discomfort.

NOW is the time to start helping your body perform as it was designed to so that it can continue to perform over time. After all, stretching is a workout in itself!

Daily Stretching Benefits

Stretching techniques can take as little as 10 minutes, but provide a multiple of benefits, including:

  • Improved posture, circulation, and range of motion
  • Accelerated recovery from injury
  • Reduced muscle tension
  • Relief from muscle soreness, strains, or spasms
  • Improved athletic performance
  • Enhanced ability to relax
  • Balance promoted throughout the body

Proper Stretching Technique

It is essential to practice proper stretching techniques.

  • Warm up first
  • Hold each stretch for at least 30 seconds
  • Don’t bounce
  • Focus on a pain-free stretch
  • Relax and breathe freely
  • Stretch both sides
  • Stretch before and after activity

Here are a few good stretches to try:

Be sure to check in with your physical therapist before starting any stretching program. 

Stretching regularly can help your body and joints move more freely, allowing you to enjoy full functional mobility.

Add a Zen Massage

Stretching is wonderfully beneficial for your body, but add in a massage once or twice a month and your body will be thanking you well into your old age!

Book your Massage online @ ZenMassage.net

Or call  (801) 467-3529

Zen Massage | Luxury Massage in Salt Lake City, Utah

5520 South Van Winkle Expy

Salt Lake City, UT 84117

Massage & CrossFit | SLC

MASSAGE IS AN IMPORTANT COMPONENT TO CROSSFIT RECOVERY

Massages feel great and they provide excellent recovery assistance for CrossFit athletes. Getting a regular massage once a month or more can help you reduce soreness and risk of injury while increasing mobility so you can perform better.

During high-intensity exercise, lactic acid and general toxins from acidity increase in your muscles. Your body can naturally clear lactic acid and toxins with time and rest, however, massage can help expedite the process, especially when you are working out often.

OTHER BENEFITS OF MASSAGE INCLUDE:
Massage lengthens fascia and muscle easing it back into place. This increases range of motion and has the added benefit of making your muscles look more toned.
Increases blood flow and circulation getting more oxygen into your body.
Decreases and anxiety and stress.
Helps reduce pain and inflammation in the joints, tendons, nerves, and bones.


THE BEST TIMES TO GET A MASSAGE:
At least 45 minutes after you have completed your workout for the day.
During recovery periods – rest days.
3 days before a competition or race. This will help improve your range of motion and mobility for your competition.
After a competition or race to help you recover quickly.

 

GETTING THE MOST OUT OF YOUR MASSAGE
You may find that your muscles are sore the next 24 – 48 hours after a massage. Help your body recover and get the most benefits from your massage by doing these few things:

Drink lots of water before and after your massage. Being properly hydrated assists with lymphatic drainage and blood flow.
Do a cold plunge right after your massage. This helps prevent toxins from reentering the muscles.
Practice Yoga or stretch an hour or more after the massage to assists the toxins to leave your body.
Use heat packs or have a warm bath with Epsom salts to reduce muscle tenderness.
Get a good nights sleep.

Book your Massage online @ ZenMassage.net

Or call  (801) 467-3529

Zen Massage | Luxury Massage in Salt Lake City, Utah
5520 South Van Winkle Expy
Salt Lake City, UT 84117

How Sore is “Too Sore” for a Massage?

A massage after a vigorous workout unquestionably feels good, reduces pain and helps muscles recover. Athletes and health professionals speak of how it eases inflammation, improves blood flow and reduces muscle tightness.

So, how does massage give this beneficial effect?

Well, vigorous exercise causes tiny tears in our muscle fibers, leading to inflammation, which is an immune reaction, as our bodies get to work repairing the injured cells.

Researchers have found that when a masseur goes to work, the production of compounds called cytokines, which play a critical role in inflammation, are reduced. They also found that massage stimulated mitochondria, tiny powerhouses inside cells that convert glucose into the energy. These are essential for cell function and repair and the stimulation helps our muscles adapt to the demands of increased exercise.

When your body aches, your muscles are tight, swollen, and in desperate need of release.

So when people ask, “Is deep tissue massage safe to get one while you’re still super sore? Or will that pressure make your tender muscles feel worse?”

Our short answer is usually, “Go for it!”

Because a post-workout massage is a great way to flush out the toxic waste your muscles produce during a workout. For the normal workout warrior getting a massage after working out is most beneficial for your body. It helps flush lactic acid build up out of muscle fiber and reduce recovery time.

On the other hand, if you are an athlete about to compete, an invigorating pre-competition massage is great to get you ready. Then a post-event massage to flush toxins and help you relax and recover afterward.

Really Really Sore?

Hold off on a strong, heavy-handed deep tissue massage. If your muscles are very tender to the touch, a traditional Swedish massage would be best because it stimulates blood and lymph circulation, bringing newly oxygenated blood to tender areas. This oxygenated blood helps “flush out” toxic waste in your muscles, which is the cause of typical soreness.

If the traditional Swedish massage turns out to be not enough for your muscle soreness, go for a stronger deep tissue or sports massage, but take note of how your body reacts.

If you feel pain mid-massage, ask your massage therapist to STOP to avoid irritating the muscles further!

Still sore?

You could get another massage as soon as two days after your first, but we recommend waiting five days. Drinking plenty of water and do light stretching to encourage full recovery. You should know that another massage won’t necessarily double-decrease your soreness over this short period of time.

Recovering from an injury?

If you’re injured, back away from the massage table!

There is a difference between being really sore and recovering from a true injury. If you’ve injured yourself recently, such as a pulled muscle, you should wait 24 to 48 hours before receiving a massage. In fact, a deep tissue massage could make matters worse for you and your injury. Instead, simply ice the tender areas and take a rest day to reduce the inflammation.

Every ache, pain, & sore muscle will react differently to massage. Some people may experience nearly instant relief post-massage, others might feel tender in trigger-point areas that were worked repeatedly during the massage. Whatever you’re feeling, as long as it’s not worsening or acute pain, you’re all good.

Book a Massage @ Zen Massage Today! 

Sources:

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