Therapeutic massage for runners: what are the advantages?

One restoration device that has gained reputation amongst runners is therapeutic massage remedy. However do runners profit from common massages, and if there are advantages, are they purely well-being-oriented, or can therapeutic massage enhance working efficiency? We have been curious to discover the analysis; right here’s what we discovered. 

Analysis findings

A number of research have examined the consequences of therapeutic massage on athletes, together with runners, however outcomes have been combined. A 2011 research from the Journal of Bodily Remedy in Sport examined the effectiveness of an everyday therapeutic massage program on novice runners over a 10-week coaching interval. The research measured working behaviour, muscle power, leg ache, day by day functioning and working confidence, and the outcomes confirmed that each the management group and the therapeutic massage group skilled comparable working behaviour and ache ranges, however all runners within the group that acquired massages accomplished a 10K race, in comparison with solely 58 per cent of the management group (who didn’t obtain massages). The research concluded that whereas common therapeutic massage remedy didn’t enhance muscle power, ache notion, day by day functioning or working confidence, the upper race completion charge within the therapeutic massage group suggests a possible, albeit unconfirmed, profit to working efficiency for novice runners.

One other research printed in 2019 within the Journal of Physiotherapy aimed to guage the consequences of therapeutic massage remedy on ache, fatigue, temper and bodily efficiency in runners after routine working. The outcomes confirmed that the runners who acquired therapeutic massage remedy had considerably decrease ache scores than these within the management group, however there have been no vital variations in fatigue, temper, flexibility, power or soar efficiency between the 2 teams. The research concluded that therapeutic massage remedy successfully decreased ache depth within the quadriceps after working, however its affect on different measures was minimal.


One other 2004 research printed within the Journal of Sports activities Science and Medication decided that when runners acquired therapeutic massage remedy on one leg after a half-marathon, they didn’t expertise elevated muscle restoration when it comes to power, swelling or soreness, however members perceived that the massaged leg felt higher upon restoration.

So does therapeutic massage remedy actually assist?

Primarily based on the present analysis, it seems therapeutic massage remedy doesn’t translate to any measurable efficiency advantages, but it surely does appear to trigger a lower in ache notion after a run. Having much less muscle ache or stiffness after a run can assist runners practice extra persistently, which in the end improves efficiency, so you might argue that therapeutic massage remedy has oblique efficiency advantages.

As with many sorts of therapies, should you imagine that therapeutic massage remedy is benefiting you, likelihood is that it’s. The relief and stress-reduction facet can even positively affect your psychological well-being, which can show you how to get pleasure from your coaching extra. 

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The underside line

The proof means that common therapeutic massage remedy can lower muscle ache and stiffness, but it surely gained’t essentially enhance your efficiency. Whereas private experiences and preferences range, therapeutic massage remedy seems to be a doubtlessly priceless restoration device for a lot of runners. When you’re contemplating therapeutic massage remedy, be certain to seek the advice of with knowledgeable therapeutic massage therapist specializing in sports-related therapeutic massage, to make sure the therapy is tailor-made to your wants. 


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