Although specific studies regarding the benefits of deep tissue massage for joint and muscle rehab are not yet available, studies have shown massage therapy to be beneficial in general for athletic performance, muscle injury prevention, and rehabilitation. All massages can help you achieve a variety of different goals, but deep tissue massage is among the best treatments available for aches and pains, improved mobility, and overall relaxation. Unlike other massage techniques, which are focused on relaxation, deep tissue massage helps treat muscle pain and improves stiffness.
Re-energize your body
While other types of massages will re-energize your body and leave you feeling relaxed, deep tissue massage provides a therapeutic effect, which may aid in healing or repairing the tissues, muscles, and joints in your body. The primary purpose of deep tissue massage is to target areas of pain and tension and provide a release from knots and adhesions in the underlying muscles and fascia. Deep tissue massage may also assist in physical symptoms of stress, such as tight muscles, shoulder pain, and tight head. Deep tissue massage can help improve muscle relaxation levels in weightlifters, where the situation with lifting can be stressful, as well as better for the lifter.
Deep tissue massage techniques apply medium to deep pressure on your muscles, which may help alleviate the tension and pain caused by your arthritis. As discussed earlier, deep tissue massage techniques target knots caused by stress, overworked muscles, and connective tissues, which helps relieve pain. In addition to benefits for your muscles and tissues, deep tissue massage also has positive effects on your general health, decreasing blood pressure and improving your lung function. One study published in the Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine found deep tissue massage had a positive effect on the readings of systolic, diastolic, and average arterial blood pressure among adults who had symptoms of pain and hypertension.
Re-align deep layers of muscles and connective tissues
Studies on deep tissue massage show that by stimulating pressure receptors–or nerves beneath the skin that send signals that decrease pain to the brain–massage pressure techniques reduce symptoms. A deep tissue massage is a form of massage therapy used to re-align deep layers of muscles and connective tissues — to target and address the root problems that may lead to chronic pain and stiffness. Pain can make your body tight, making it more difficult for your massage therapist to access deeper layers of muscles. Because your therapist will be massaging the innermost layers of your connective tissues and muscles, there is part of this treatment that can feel uncomfortable or nearly painful.
Massage therapists can access deep layers of your muscle tissues using their elbows, forearms, fingertips, and muscles. After prepping the muscles, the massage therapist applies deeper pressure using the elbows, forearms, fingers, and thumbs. The therapist can start by warming up the muscles with gentle pressure, then massaging the target area using slower movements and applying deeper pressure using their hands, arms, or elbows. Swedish massage targets the superficial layers of muscles, focusing on areas of the body that tend to carry the most tension, like the neck, shoulders, and back.
The Benefits Of Deep Tissue Massage – Routing Massages
Deep muscle stripping and myofascial release (MFR) may create some bruising or soreness, but joint stretching done in deep tissue sessions should not make you sore the next few days, says Amy Montia. Amy Montia, PhD, LMT, and physiologic massage therapist, says deep tissue sessions may incorporate these elements, but they are not necessarily relaxing. In addition to missing the benefits of a routine massage, most people do not leave enough time in each massage session, particularly if the massage is for deep tissue. Many people decide to see a massage therapist regularly in order to help improve mobility, avoid pain, reduce stress, and relax.