Maybe you’ve just hit the gym and feeling a little worse for wear than when you first jumped on the treadmill. Perhaps you’ve been tearing up the concrete to try and hit a new personal best. Maybe you’re just going about your daily work and feeling the strain of your routine. No matter what kind of discomfort or pain you’re experiencing, there are several ways to treat it all through physiotherapy.
But the type of treatment and the practices involved vary from one case to another; it’s also important to remember that everyone’s bodies react differently to specific treatments. What may work for one person’s situation may not bring about the same results for another.
That’s where a dedicated physiotherapist comes in. Assessing your current case and the symptoms you’re experiencing, your practitioner will assign you a treatment option that best suits the severity of your condition. This may include a remedial or sports massage – both bringing about different functionalities, benefits and focuses.
What’s a remedial massage?
Remedial massage is often confused with a deep tissue massage, this treatment option is typically used for those with injuries or pain relating to sore shoulders. These areas often need to be worked deeply and carefully, so a remedial massage attends to chronic pain across these areas. It also looks at chronic lower back pain, persistent headaches and even tennis elbow or frozen shoulders.
Additional benefits include:
- Reduce stress: Both physically and emotionally, this type of massage can help by affecting neurohormones that affect our behaviour and emotions. It gives a kick of endorphins (the feel-good hormone) and brings down your cortisol levels (the hormone responsible for stress and pain). It can also increase mood-enhancing advantages that can even positively influence anxiety and depression, boost focus and your energy levels.
- Improve immunity: When you go through this treatment, there’s the ability to allow your body to stimulate natural killer cells that fight off any nasties in the body. This then lowers level s of cytokines (responsible for inflammation) and boosts your overall immune system.
- Improves posture: If you have a habit of slouching, remedial massage can also help with this by relieving postural stress.
- Assists joint mobility and flexibility: Those suffering from chronic conditions may need this treatment the most. It gives movement back to your muscle groups and increases the range of movement by decreasing tension.
What’s a sports massage?
On the other hand, sports massages are similar but still have their own specific focuses. Just like the name suggests, it places emphasis on sports-related injuries or discomfort. It’s also ideal for those with highly intense jobs that have physical demands.
Mostly, it’s appropriate for anyone who remains active, even if you don’t necessarily have a specific injury needing attention.
Other advantages include:
- Increase movement: Just like a remedial massage, a sports-focused technique can help you increase flexibility and movement across your body.
- Decrease muscle spasms: Typically, a common occurrence for those that are highly active, muscle spasms can impact your day-to-day living. This technique aims to decrease these instances, working carefully through the muscle groups.
- Improve sleep: Allow your body to relax and feel less tension when it’s time to hit the pillow.
Decrease neurological excitability: This means your nerves can become more relaxed through techniques designed to soothe them.
- Increase blood flow: Supporting your muscles to get the oxygen and blood flow they need, this allows you to spend less time recovering after a big session and more time being active.