One thing I often tell clients, is that massage is a bit like having a personal training session – if you just do your sessions with your trainer, your progress will be much slower than if you were to continue practicing on your own in between sessions.
The same applies when you are having massage for a particular ache or pain – the “homework” that you do in between will pave the way for how productive our subsequent appointments can be.
Try some or all of the following to help keep that post massage feeling;
1 – Hydrate
Massage has a flushing effect on the lymphatic system, which in turn causes you to urinate more. Drinking plenty of water after your massage will prevent dehydration which can help avoid headaches and phenomenons like DOMS and “healing crisis”.
2 – Stretch
Your muscles are warm after your massage and now is a good time to gently stretch the areas that have been tight before treatment, maintaining that relaxed feeling and achieving a more effortless, and often deeper, stretch.
A warm (although not too hot) bath the evening of your massage will help continue the relaxing of tense muscles. I like to add some epsom salts as magnesium aids in over 300 functions of the body.
4 – Self massage
Using a tennis ball for hard to reach areas, or just your own hands to massage legs, arms and neck will keep circulation flowing, decrease that “tight” feeling and maintain progress between appointments.
5 – Movement
Prevent stiffening up after deep tissue work with some gentle exercise like yoga or walking to keep joints mobilised and encourage blood flow.
6 – Break the habit
A lot of the general aches and pains that clients complain of are down to posture. Take this opportunity to reset yourself, as returning to poor posture will immediately put strain back on the muscles that have just been relaxed.
7 – Re-book
Unless your massage was purely to relax after a one-off stressful week, then a standalone treatment is unlikely to resolve any issues. Booking your weekly, fortnightly, or monthly appointment in advance will help you stick to a routine that will see the most long term improvements.