Massage therapy can help treat and prevent not only sports injuries, but also injuries received during everyday activities such as house cleaning, gardening, moving items, and many more. It provides a number of therapeutic effects that help minimize the chance of receiving an injury. For instance, over time, muscles can tighten and shorten which increases the risk of muscle, ligament, and tendon strains. Regular massage sessions help keep muscles and tissues loose and flexible decreasing the risk of strain and tears. A deep tissue massage will improve circulation so that blood flow carrying oxygen and nutrients to the tissues will be increased. This will optimize muscle and ligament health and relieve muscle stiffness and tension.
It has also been shown that massage therapy on a regular basis can not only help prevent injury, but it also helps extend an athlete’s career by maintaining physical health. Ways regular massage sessions help prevent injuries include: improving mobility, joint flexibility and range of motion, increasing circulation, strengthening the immune system, and alleviating musculoskeletal problems which will improve posture.
Seventy-six clinical nurse specialists—all of whom worked in various inpatient and outpatient units in a large Midwest medical facility—were surveyed electronically on their use of complementary therapies for patients and themselves, according to a report from the Mayo Clinic published on www.pubmed.gov.
“There has been an increase in the use and awareness of complementary and integrative therapies in the United States over the last 10 years,” the report noted. “Clinical nurse specialists are in an ideal place to influence this paradigm shift in medicine to provide holistic care.”
The top therapies requested most by patients were massage, spirituality/prayer, healing touch, acupuncture and music therapy. The top therapies the nurses personally used were humor, massage, spirituality/prayer, music therapy and relaxed breathing.
The results indicated most of the nurses thought complementary therapies were beneficial, the researchers noted.
The results of this study will help determine educational needs and clinical practice of complementary therapies at the medical center, the report stated.