Soft Tissue Therapy and Sports Massage

What is it?

Soft tissue therapy is the manipulation of muscles and soft tissues in the body. For thousands of years, massage has been used as a natural therapy to treat many musculoskeletal issues. Every treatment we do is individual to each client.

How can it help?

We use a combination of massage and advanced techniques to help alleviate pain and soreness, release tension and stiffness, prevent injury, increase flexibility and mobility, and help a person continue with regular physical activity.

We treat muscle and joint pain or dysfunction from sports injuries and everyday life. We can also help with conditions such as sciatica, MS, diabetes, IBS, arthritis, high blood pressure, carpal tunnel, post-surgery scar tissue, and lots more.

Here are a list of benefits of soft tissue therapy:

  • Alleviate muscle tightness
  • Increase mobility in the joints
  • Speed up muscle recovery
  • Reduce pain
  • Improve blood flow and circulation
  • Lymphatic drainage and flush toxins
  • Get back to full strength
  • Improve sports performance

Let's explore some of these benefits in more detail...

The body requires a good supply of blood for growth and repair. The cells in the body also require blood to supply them with good nutrition. When we use massage on the body it has a wonderful pumping effect which can stimulate blood circulation. An increase in blood circulation can help to heal the body and keep it in optimal condition.

Blood is a constantly moving connective tissue. There are four main components that make up blood which are plasma, red blood cells, white blood cells and platelets. Collectively, they make up around 8% of an adult's body weight.

Arteries and veins work together transporting blood around the body but both also serving different purposes.

The purpose of the arteries is to transport oxygenated blood away from the heart and deliver it to the organs and tissues around the rest of the body. Red in colour, arteries have thick elastic muscular wall which can vary in size. There are three layers that make up the arteries; the outer layer is mostly fibrous tissue, the middle layer is smooth muscle and the thickest inner layer consisting of elastic tissue.

Veins are found closer to the surface of the skin compared to arteries. The diameter of veins are wider than arteries as they are required to carry a larger volume of blood and the closer to the heart veins are, the larger they are in size. Despite the higher volume of fluid they transport, blood flows at a lower pressure in the veins than in the arteries. They expand when required to accommodate more blood.

Massage has the ability to stretch and increase the size of the walls of our blood vessels, increasing their functionality. Boosting the circulatory system is particularly good for the legs, especially the lower legs where blood-flow pressure is lesser and slower than the upper body and so the blood vessels in lower legs have to work harder. Massage strokes up the legs towards the heart can help push blood upwards in the veins which will be immediately followed by a lovely re-filled flow of arterial blood, fresh and oxygenated.

Lymphatic vessels can only travel in one direction towards the heart. Their overall function is to filter and remove toxins and waste products.

Lymph is a colourless fluid which accommodates components including white blood cells, water, proteins and salt amongst other properties. With double the amount than that of blood, lymph flows in one direction in through lymphatic vessels and into the lymph nodes. Lymph is designed to maintain correct bodily fluid levels, fight against foreign bodies and provide immunity. The lymphatic system also transports and absorbs fats and fat-soluble vitamins that have come from the digestive system. These substances are absorbed into the lymphatic vessels and transported into the blood. Lymph is able to flow due to contractions of the skeletal muscle, respiratory activity and valves in the lymphatic vessels.

Lymphatic vessels, similar to veins and capillaries in the circulatory system, form an expansive structure and divide into smaller, thinner-walled capillaries. Lymphatic vessels collect leaked lymph from blood vessel capillaries and transport it to the lymph nodes. This essentially drains the body of toxins and waste. Also without this occurring, the tissues would become excessively saturated and could cause the circulatory system to stop working as effectively.

Lymphatic vesss typically run in parallel to our veins. Massage has the ability to stimulate the flow of lymph, helping to ensure the flow is up to adequate speed and capability, keeping the body in top condition.

The nervous system is a highly complex system which receives rapid messages from the body and environment around it. Signals are then distributed through the nerves for processing. This can control the movement and activity of the body, activate the senses, and help maintain the normal functions of the body but also assist in emergencies. The system responds either consciously or unconsciously to the information received and acts accordingly.

Massage has an affect on the nervous system. Nerve receptors in our tissues can be stimulated which can adapt how tense our tissues are. Consequently this can relax our soft tissues, reduce pain and restore balance in the body. It can help conditions such as high blood pressure, sleep and digestive disorders and migraines.

There are psychological benefits to massage as well as physical. Clients often feel positive, relaxed and a good sense of well-being following a soft tissue treatment.

Any questions? Get in touch!

Contact us to book your treatment