Picture
It's best to save the massage for after your workout. Your muscles need about 24 hours after receiving a massage to recover before doing any vigorous exercise, such as running or weight training. If you push your muscles to work too soon, it can actually increase soreness and decrease the effectiveness of the soft tissue work done during your massage therapy session.

You can certainly partake in light exercises, such as walking or gentle swimming, within the 24 hour post massage period. Be sure to stay hydrated, and spend some time stretching and soaking in a hot Epsom salt bath after your massage to get the maximum benefit from it. You want your body to have time to recover and adjust to the new subtle movement patterns before your get back to your normal workout routine. If you are going to be participating in an athletic competition, you want to get a massage about 48-72 hours beforehand.

A massage after a workout, however, is very beneficial. According to a study published in the "Journal of Athletic Training", massage received about three hours after a strenuous strength training workout actually reduced the occurrence of DOMS (delayed onset muscle soreness) by about 30%.


From the studio of
Neelou Saleh
Licensed Massage Therapist
Kingwood, TX
www.spiritoflotus.com

 
 
Picture
Sitting at the office all day can do a number on your feet. Yes, that's right, believe it or not, sitting all the time is bad for your feet. When you aren't really using them, the sensors in your feet become deactivated, in turn reducing mobility in the feet and ankles. Next thing you know, you've got knee and back problems to boot.

So, first things first. You need to get yourself a tennis ball. Accessible and inexpensive, these little babies can do wonders for your muscles. Here are three simple ways to keep those feet and ankles in good shape without ever having to leave your desk (though I highly recommend getting up every hour and taking a short stroll!).

1. Roll the ball
Take your shoe off, push your foot on the ball and roll it back forth for 2 to 3 minutes per foot. When you sit all day, the soft tissue called fascia tends to tighten up, and this move will loosen it back up.

2. Flex your toes
Activating the muscles in your feet helps to waken your entire body. Put your toes on the floor, heel up, and grip the ground with your toes for about 10 seconds, then extend them up for 5. Do 20 reps on each foot.

3. Work your calves
Pushing the ball into the top and sides of your calf, roll along the length of the muscles. If it's sore, that means you found more tension to work on. The more you do this, the better it will feel. Work each leg for about 2 minutes at a time.


From the studio of
Neelou Saleh
Licensed Massage Therapist
Kingwood, TX
www.spiritoflotus.com