Prevent injuries with massage


Prevent injuries in the great outdoors
Prepare with massage and warmups

Like so many others, you may feel the need to get out of the house and move. When you go outside, it may be for vigorous activities like gardening, raking leaves, or exercise. Think ahead and prepare. Make sure your muscles are warm. Wear layers and start your activities slowly, gradually stepping up the pace. If you are experiencing muscle tightness, or have injured yourself in the past, schedule massage during the yard work and gardening season.

As you begin your gardening or engaging in your sport, focus on using your body "smarter, not harder." Switch activities every 30 minutes so you are not using the same muscles for extended periods. Take regular rest breaks and stretch the muscles you've been using.

Ramping up your outdoor activities carefully will give your body time to adjust and could prevent soreness and even injury. If you add regular massage to your schedule, it may prevent pain and injuries as well. Massage stretches tight muscles and enhances circulation around the joints. And if you do get sore or injured, research shows massage is effective for back pain.

A clinical trial at the Center for Health Studies, Group Health Seattle, showed massage produced a "substantial and persistent benefit" for low back pain sufferers during the 10-week study. "The magnitude of this effect was quite surprising. Function is not an easy thing to improve in people with chronic back pain," said Daniel Cherkin, PhD and acting director of the Center.

With warmups and regular massage, your body will be more prepared and less prone to injury when you go outside to bend, reach, twist and run.

Sarah Gaudette
Paradise Therapy
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Massage & Wellness - Bradenton, Florida

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