Massage has been in practice for thousands of years and is considered complementary or an alternative to medical treatment, as well as for relaxation purposes. It’s still being practiced for the same reasons, but now there are a variety of massages offered by professional therapists. There have been countless studies that prove massages effectively reduce stress, pain and muscle tension.
The manual manipulation and stimulation of your muscles and soft tissues is referred to as massage therapy. Depending on the type of experience you want, there is a wide range of massage styles available. The two most common types of massage are deep tissue and sports massage. By understanding the different types of massages, you will be able to understand what’s best for you.
A sports massage, as the name suggests, is targeted towards athletes and people who participate in high endurance activities. A sports massage targets the muscles that are used for the sport and there are many different techniques applied that help athletes in training. These massages are done before, during or after the event. A sports massage is beneficial for two reasons. First, it helps your muscles become more flexible because the stimulation helps loosen the tension. Second, it helps ease muscle strains and other muscle related injury caused during a sporting event.
Deep Tissue Massage
A deep tissue massage can be for anyone of any age or any gender. This type of massage helps ease the stiff and painful muscles of your body. During the massage, the therapist uses gentle and slow strokes that focus on your most tense muscles. By putting pressure on your layers of muscles, tendons and other deep tissue, the tension is slowly released. Comparatively, deep tissue massage is less rhythmic but it’s definitely more therapeutic. All types of chronic pains and body strains can be effectively healed with a few sessions of a deep tissue massage.
Difference between Sport Massage and Deep Tissue Massage
A sports massage by a professional therapist is essential if you want to prevent common injuries and muscle strains. A professional massage therapist knows exactly which muscles to focus on depending on the type of activity you participate in. On the other hand, a deep tissue massage can identify the weak spots of your body, but the therapist might not be experienced enough to focus on your sport-specific muscles.
The technique is similar for both types of massages. The sport and deep tissue massage both include kneading, tapping, vibrations and circular movements. The only difference is that a sports massage focuses on manipulating muscles that are affected during sports. Also, a sports massage is mostly restricted to professional athletes who spend a lot of time training for sports. These massages are part of their pre-game warm up or post-game cool down. It helps them reduce their risk for muscle
cramping. A deep tissue massage is not restricted to a particular set of people and can be done for anyone.
In a nutshell, a sports massage is for improving your overall sports performance, while a deep tissue massage helps in relieving stress and tension.