Massage Therapy @ EMPC
Timing is everything when it comes to massage. Wait too long and those adhesions will tighten and multiply. Here is a timetable from licensed massage therapist Janine Verstraeten, who has worked with the Specialized-lululemon and US national teams.
Before a big race or event: Go for a deep-tissue massage three to five days before a physically demanding ride to break up adhesions and ensure your muscles move freely. Verstraeten also recommends going for an easy spin and then lightly rubbing your muscles one to two days before the event to boost blood flow and flush out waste. You can use your hands, a foam roller, or a massage stick.
"When a massage therapist glides his or her hands across your muscles, blood vessels open and waste can be flushed. This helps reduce tenderness after a hard ride or workout. The increase in blood flow speeds recovery from muscle injury by providing more nutrition to the tissue and maybe also by improving the removal of waste products.
Massages also have a rejuvenating effect. When muscles are stressed, the fibers of the fascia that cover them suffer micro-tears. As they heal, these fibers become stronger, but they also can form scar tissue, called adhesions, which can limit your range of motion and cause discomfort. Deep pressure applied by a therapist to the fascia breaks up these adhesions. You're left feeling fresh and rejuvenated and ready to tackle the next big climb."
- Shane A. Phillips, PhD