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As a patient once said to me, “We have our teeth checked every six months from the age of three so why is it not mandatory to have our bodies checked too?” This applies even more so if you are training for your first marathon, competing in a new weightlifting competition or taking part in regular triathlons. Many people who participate in high-level competitions and events understand the need to eat, sleep and train well, but they don’t always know what is best when it comes to looking after their body. Having regular sports massage can improve recovery time and muscle condition, enabling you to train at a higher, safer level.

I am involved in pre- and post-event sports massage in several different ways. I am lucky enough to join local teams at their events and see firsthand how athletes perform on the day. If I see you immediately before the event, you will, on average, have a 10 to 15-minute massage slot. The goal of this session is all about movement, mobility and warm-up. I aim to increase blood supply, allowing you to perform at your best during the event. The brisk fluid movements performed in multiple directions, with varying compressive forces, achieve this. Events can be stressful, and improving your mental outlook is key to winning! Any questions about how your body feels or what you should do after the event to aid in recovery time can be answered within this brief time slot.

The key aims of post-event massage are to aid your recovery time, reduce injury risk or assess the injury. This can be useful anywhere from 30 minutes to 48 hours after an event. Using softer fluid motions will improve venous return and lymphatic circulation, restore normal resting tonus and regain resting muscle length and joint mobility.

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