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Why you should consider getting a massage pre-and post-event

Summer is here and many dedicated runners have already begun training for the annual Sunriver Resort Half Marathon for a Cause. The process of preparing for this marathon can feel easy some days and grueling others, but the finish line always feels the same. Pure elation!

If you follow professional athletes and most notably Olympic athletes you will find that they are citing massage more and more these days. So why is massage giving athletes a leg up in the competition? To understand that question, we have to understand first how muscles work.

Let's start with the sliding filaments of a muscle. What are sliding filaments? Simply put it is the physiological process of muscles flexing. That is the easiest way to describe this complex process. My favorite analogy is a rowing team. When a rowing team drops its paddles in the water and pulls back, the boat moves forward. Muscle tissue is doing the same thing. The tiny filaments of muscles are pulling back causing muscles to flex and create movement. These tiny filaments get stuck sometimes and that is where massage comes in. Massage therapists can disengage these tiny filaments so they start working properly again. Let's step back to our rowing team analogy real quick. If one rower on the team gets tired and stops rowing then the entire boat will no longer glide in the water efficiently. That is one of the reasons why massage improves performance. It keeps your muscular rowing team moving effectively while you run. A knot in a muscle is simply stuck filaments and therapists are masters at opening up the filaments so they start working for you again.

Let's look at it from a chemical point of view. Your nerves are prompting a chemical reaction when you run. A chemical is dropped onto the muscle causing it to flex. Think of this process as the person on the rowing team yelling ‘stroke’ to signal the team to pull back and move the boat forward. The only problem is when the nerve decides it doesn't want to stop firing. This overzealous nerve causes fatigue and muscle spasms. Massage therapists calm the nerves through slow sustained pressure that essentially resets the nerve. It's like flipping a breaker so the electrical system starts working properly.

Then there is hydration and nutrition. If the body doesn't efficiently transport these necessary and vital ingredients to the muscles, then the muscles fatigue and the sliding filaments stick. Massage therapists improve circulation, which delivers these important components to the muscular tissue while whisking away metabolic waste, such as lactic acid, that causes muscle soreness.

This is why massage is perfect pre-event and post-event. Whether you need to optimize your muscles performance or flush the metabolic waste after an event, you will benefit from massage. 

Visit our Sage Springs Spa team for a pre-event consultation and treatment to find your optimal performance, or stop by their booth after the Sunriver Resort Half Marathon for a Cause to rest and repair. We carefully select a team of knowledgeable and highly trained therapists that can help you find your best self in your everyday training and at the finish line.

Happy training and we will see you at the Spa!
Tifany LeGuyonne
Sage Springs Spa Manager, Licensed Massage Therapist and Licensed Esthetician


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