A lot of NFL players get massages on a regular basis nowadays.

And most, if not all, combine training facilities offer massage therapy for their clients.

But you don’t have to wait until you get to the NFL or became a projected NFL draft pick before you can take advantage of the benefits of massage therapy.

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Titans' tight end Bo Scaife is one of several NFL advocates of massage therapy. (ICON Sports)

Shoot, you never know; considering all the benefits of massage therapy, it could very well end up being part of the reason why you end up being a projected NFL draft pick to begin with.

I recently researched the benefits of massage therapy, and decided to make a post about what I learned.

With all the competition out there, if you wanna get to the NFL, you’d be wise to take advantage of every edge you can find.

Feel free to do your own research on the claims made in this post on the benefits of massage therapy.

And as always, feel free to consult with your physician or team doctor before starting any new physical activity.

If you can, it’s best to go to a licensed professional for massage therapy.

But if that’s not possible, you can have your girlfriend help you with it, as long as she has some basic knowledge
on how to give you a massage the right way.

Let’s get started.

Lesson #1 – Massage Therapy Can Improve Range of Motion and Flexibility

 

The Massage Envy Spa franchise claims that massage therapy can help you with your range of motion and flexibility.

If this is true, these are major claims, because the more flexible you are, the greater your range of motion, and as we’ve discussed already, a greater range of motion can improve your performance on the field and decrease your risk for injury.

You can’t make plays on the sidelines.

I spotted this article at the US National Library of Medicine’s website that talks about the results from a study, that concluded that massage therapy does indeed help improve your range of motion.

In the article, Paul Winsper from the National Academy of Sports Medicine elaborates on how a better range of motion helps your
athletic ability.

Apparently, it all starts with an improvement in muscle balance:

Balanced muscles increase a joint’s range of motion, which improves the surrounding muscles’ suppleness and contractibility, decreases wear and tear on the articular structures encapsulating the joint, promotes healing of stressed tissue, and assists in motor-learning processes to ensure more effective and correct performance techniques…”

Lesson #2 – Massage Therapy Can Reduce Muscle Stiffness and Soreness

 

I’ve read claims that massage therapy reduces heart rate and blood pressure, which in turn reduce muscle stiffness.

The muscle stiffness and soreness relief that massage therapy can give you are two of the main reasons why the combine training facilities incorporate massage therapy into their client’s regimens.

But why exactly does massage therapy help with muscle soreness?

In this article from the website for the Lake Tahoe Massage Therapy office, they explain that when our muscles are active, waste like
carbon dioxide and lactic acid is produced.

“Carrier molecules” take this garbage and sweep them out of the muscle cells.

To make it clear to understand the role massage therapy plays in removing this waste from your muscles, they give the following analogy (this is my paraphrased version):

Imagine a waste management company in a town that has a lot of tourism.

During normal times of the year, this company might have, say 150 employees running  around transporting trash.

But during the holidays, this city might experience a big increase in tourism, which means they’re going to have more garbage than normal.

To makeup for the increase in trash, the company might need to hire (for example) 50 more people.

It’s the same way with your muscles.  During normal every day actions, the normal bodily functions are able to clean out the metabolic wastes produced from our muscles.

But when you’re going through training, or training camp, for example, your body could use the additional “employees” to carry out the increase in waste created under the increase in stress your body experiences from your training.

In-case your girlfriend doesn’t know how to give you a massage, the young lady in this video goes over some basics:

Okee-do-kee, that’s enough for now.  Check back soon for part two, where I’ll go over some of the other ways massage therapy can help you out on the field.

Have you already been getting massages to help you athletically?  Why or why not?  Leave a comment!

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