Deep Tissue/Sports Massage
Deep Tissue vs. Sports Massage
This is similar to ‘All eagles are birds, but not all birds are eagles.’ Deep-tissue massage identifies areas of muscle weakness, but therapist might not be targeting sport-specific injury areas. Sports Massage is specific to treating common injuries and muscular challenges of athletes (hamstring strains, shin splints, etc.). Sports Therapists identify areas in which you experience muscle tightness or determine muscle abnormalities that could potentially lead to injury if left untreated.
Sports Massage uses Deep Tissue techniques that are altered in specific ways defined by the sport the athlete participates in. However, about 85% of all problems are solved by a deep-tissue approach, including whiplash or back strain.
I’ll personalize it like this: I’ve worked on a lot of MMA fighters, Triathletes, Runners, Golfers, Tennis Players... However, I haven’t worked on (nor have I studied) Hockey. So, if you are a hockey player, I may not be your guy. If you step into the octagon, I know what to do.
The Difference in the work
One area of commonality between deep-tissue massage & sports massage is that both massage types use similar strokes. This includes sustained pressure, passive joint mobilization, kneading, & movement. Sports massage uses similar methods of manipulating the skin, yet tends to be more focused on sports-related areas of pain. So it is the same stuff, but it has a different focus.
Goals of Deep Tissue & Sports Massage
Sports massage is dedicated to improving sports performance, boosting flexibility and handling injuries or potential injuries. A person may have more reasons for seeking out a deep-tissue massage. These include reducing toxins in the body, relieving stress, boosting circulation, reducing tension, unlocking bound areas of the body, & reducing physical pain.
THe client's view
Sports massage is typically performed on serious athletes, those who train 4+ days a week for a professional, collegiate or high-school-level sport. These clients probably use massage as a part of pre-game warm-up or post-game regiment to reduce the likelihood of muscle cramping & offer Tissue optimization. A large part of the value of Sports Massage comes from assessing risk within tissue & preventing injury.
Deep-tissue clients are more varied, ranging from business people to students. They do not have to participate in a certain activity or have an injury in order to receive a deep-tissue massage.
Everyone would benefit from Deep Tissue work. The serious athlete should get Sports Massage.