Aftercare: How to Get the Most Out of Your Massage
Have you ever wondered how can you extend the benefits of massage in-between sessions?
Here are 11 proven tips to help you do just that!
Drink water. It combats dehydration, which has it’s own set of problems. Staying hydrated can ward off headaches, too. Also, coffee doesn’t count as water. : )
Breathe. So simple, yet sometimes hard to remember, make sure you’re not holding your breath. It helps get that oxygen to your muscles to help with repair. Being mindful of your breath can also be useful as a mini-meditation.
Move your body. It doesn’t have to be exercise. You don’t even have to sweat or raise your heart rate. Just move your body.
Stretch. Keep those muscles open and relaxed for as long as possible. Retrain your body and brain that this is the way you want to feel, open and loose. Gentle stretching works great — no overextending!
Strengthen weak muscles. It will help your body work optimally and allow all muscles to do what they were made to do and not compensate for each other. The result is less pain and strain.
Use heat or cold. Have a general feeling of achiness or chronic dull pain? Put a hot pack on the tight muscle for a while, or take a hot Epsom salt bath. Tight muscles love heat! Or, if you’re experiencing inflamed tissue that has acute pain or feels like it’s “on fire,” throw some ice on it for 10-15 minutes.
Find ways to manage your stress. What makes you smile? What do you look forward to coming home to? Is it walking your dog, petting your cat, listening to music, baking bread, talking to a friend on the phone? Whatever makes you happy — do it — even if it’s only for a few minutes a day. Plan little treats for yourself at the end of each day or each week, so you have something to look forward to.
Get some sleep. Real, actual sleep helps your body and mind repair.
Eat healthy food. Get some nutrients in you to repair any damaged tissue we are working on. Whole foods, as opposed to overly processed, are always preferred.
Get regular massage. Make sure you don’t go too long withoug a massage. It’s OK to have body work BEFORE your body feels tight, tense or painful. Regular massage can help you sleep better — and who doesn’t like to sleep well?
Talk to your doctor: If you aren’t seeing improvements in your condition, or you feel worse, it may be a good idea to check in with your doctor to see if your symptoms are related to something non-muscular based.
I hope these tips help you feel great in-between your massage sessions.
Thank you for visiting Lighthouse Healing Massage Therapy!