There’s nothing like a great exercise session to make you feel energetic and cheerful, but we all know that a powerful workout isn’t without its downsides. No matter how sore or exhausted we feel after a gym class or a run, we know that we’ll likely feel even worse the following morning!
This strong, yet oddly satisfying pain is called DOMS – or Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness – and it is the bane of all athletes and exercise fans, particularly those who are starting something new.
Working your muscles harder than what they’re used to, or doing different exercises for the first time, causes microscopic damage to the muscle fibers. This is what causes DOMS and makes you feel sore and stiff in the hours (or days) following your workout.
DOMS can feel pretty awful, but it shouldn’t put you off your exercise routine! The answer to post-workout soreness is a good sports massage. And we don’t know about you, but any excuse to spend a little more time on the massage table is fine by us!
How Sports Massage Can Help
At Healing Kneads, we use sports massage on all kinds of athletes, and a wide variety of sports and exercises. It can be used to improve flexibility, prevent injuries, and enhance performance both pre and post-event, and best of all, it offers significant relief from DOMS!
Because DOMS is a natural part of strenuous exercise, it can be a difficult obstacle to overcome. But a good sports massage performed by a specialist is one of the best ways to minimize that post-workout soreness. It encourages the muscles to relax, reduces pain, aids your recovery, and helps your muscles rebuild.
The Best Techniques for Dealing With DOMS
Passive Stretching – Passive stretching is essentially assisted stretching. This is where the massage therapist uses specific techniques to increase mobility and flexibility of a muscle, or group of muscles. It is low impact and can be hugely beneficial in gently reducing soreness and relieving stress. Workout clothes can be worn during stretching sessions, which makes them perfect for those who are a little nervous about visiting a massage clinic for the first time.
Percussive Therapy – Percussive therapy sounds like it might be painful (it uses a massage ‘gun’!), but it can in fact alleviate the pain you’re feeling post workout. Percussive therapy uses rapid bursts of pressure on the affected muscles to encourage blood flow, speed up the recovery process, and reduce tension and inflammation. It’s an extremely effective and popular choice for those who experience regular soreness and stiffness after exercise.
Deep Tissue Massage – Deep tissue massage treatments, like petrissage, kneading, or rolling, can be a great way of staving off the worst effects of DOMS. Warming up the muscles in this way before a workout can help prevent soreness later on.
Healing Kneads Sports Massage
At Healing Kneads, we have an incredible new therapist, Thomas Allman, who specializes in sports massage. He has a passion for health and healing and has a wonderful massage style that combines Eastern and Western modalities, thanks to his experience as a certified yoga teacher.
Thomas is committed to making every client experience fantastic, going the extra mile to make our clients feel comfortable during every therapy session. As he puts it: ‘massage isn’t something I do to someone, it is something I do with someone.’
If you are struggling with DOMS, don’t hesitate to get in touch with Healing Kneads – we’ll be delighted to help you through the frustration of post-workout pain!
We look forward to seeing you soon!