What is a sports massage?

What is a sports massage?

Today I had a patient ask me what a sports massage was and how it differed to what I, as an osteopath do, for my patients.

It sounds like an easy question to answer because osteopaths only help people with neck or back pain and ‘crack’ spines in weird and wonderful positions, right? Well, not exactly…

Osteopathy is much more than what was just described. Frustratingly, the problem is that the general public doesn’t fully understand the full scope of what it is that we do as primary healthcare professionals. Everybody knows what a chiropractor or physiotherapist is, but ask a group of people what an osteopath does and you will observe several shoulder shrugs and possibly some chin scratching too. If you are lucky, you may hear a story from a village elder that has been treated by an osteopath and still talks (two years later) about the loud ‘popping’ noises they heard emitting from their body as they were being wrapped up like a pretzel. But, that is not all that we do. Osteopaths don’t just consider the painful site and focus on that and its immediate surroundings, we are taught to think, why. Why did the pain occur? What happened to cause a negative change to the body? Where is it coming from? That is what we are taught and trained to do, look for the problem and not just treat the symptoms.

In my opinion, based upon my own experiences and what I have heard from other people, patients, friends and family, sports massage is a great therapy to alleviate aching muscles.

Muscles can ache after taking part in strenuous activity and may need some TLC to help them recover faster. By using massage techniques to flush out any metabolites from the afflicted areas and increase the blood flow back into the tissues that are lacking.

Sports massage is also a handy therapy to incorporate into any routine before embarking upon any strenuous activity, be it a marathon or a cup final. Having a sports massage up to 48 hours before an event will improve the circulation to the muscles, relax them and help you to perform at your highest level, whilst reducing the chance of injury and the need to then call an osteopath!

Do you have Tennis or Golfer’s elbow?

Do you have Tennis or Golfer’s elbow?

Tennis elbow or (Lateral epicondylitis), is a painful condition that causes pain on the outside of the elbow.

The forearm is made up of many muscles. The tendons from these muscles cross the elbow joint and allow the elbow, wrist and fingers to extend.

If these muscles and tendons become strained, then inflammation may develop on the outside of the elbow joint. Strains like this, often occur through repetitive motions such as racquet sports, decorating or computer mouse work.

Golfer’s elbow differs from tennis elbow in that the pain is focused on the inside of the elbow. But the causes are similar: tendon strains and tears caused by repetitive movement, whether it’s a golf swing, lifting weights etc.


Tennis elbow – An ache over the outside of the elbow

Golfer’s elbow – An ache over the inside of the elbow

Both conditions, if left untreated, may become chronic. The ache may develop so that it is too painful to touch the affected area or even to grip objects.

Self help:

In an acute episode of pain, place some ice, covered in a tea towel, on the painful area for ten minutes. Remove the ice and allow the tissue to warm back up to its normal temperature again. Repeat this step.

Self massage the muscles in the forearm to try to take some tension off of the tendon.

Stretch the muscles of the forearm.

Further help:

If like a growing number of people, you do not want to take medication or have steroid injections, there are other treatments available that may help. Medical acupuncture and deep tissue laser therapy are both great ways to reduce the pain experienced with both tennis and golfer’s elbow.

If you are interested in learning more or booking an appointment please contact us at:

Tel: 01536 216223

email: [email protected]

Web: www.taylorosteopathy.co.uk


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