Smooth Cycling

A few years ago I purchased my first road bike and joined in with the many recreational cyclists. I find it is a great activity for keeping up my fitness level, but without the impact on my joints that I get with running. That isn’t to say cycling is always an injury free sport, it should be balanced with an overall strength and flexibility fitness plan which includes recovery massage. Two common areas of discomfort that I see as an RMT are the upper back/neck area and the low back/hips. Massage helps decompress the restriction of blood flow, stimulate the nervous system and restore circulation to the muscles. During a massage treatment I incorporate stretching techniques that target specific segments of muscles that are tight. For example bringing your chin to your chest will stretch all of your neck extensors, but not necessarily the tighter aspects at the base of your skull unless manually isolated. Releasing the trigger points in the affected/shortened muscles results in decreased discomfort as well as increased endurance and power on the bike. In the photo below, my friend and Iron-woman inspiration Steph Corker demonstrates great bike posture and the joy of smooth cycling!

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 “Riding 180km during Ironman can be joyful!  Outside of ensuring my bike was fit properly, getting frequent massages ensured that long miles on the bike I was relaxed and getting every ounce of power out of my body. With small tweaks, we really can ride forever……so bring on the gran fondos + massage appointments” Steph Corker

 

Spring into Fitness

cherry blossom

The cherry blossoms are out and it is inspiring to see so many people out running, biking, hiking and playing sports in the fresh air. It is also a time that as an RMT I see an increase in injuries; mainly hip, knee and ankle issues from jumping into activities a bit too hard too soon. Sustaining an injury can be very frustrating and limiting, but massage therapy helps with the healing process. During a massage session I treat the specific area in pain as well as addressing compensating areas that you may not even realize are sore or tight. Everything is connected and one little injury can develop into nagging back pain or chronic gait dysfunction. For example, a tight glute muscle can cause the opposite side low back and groin area to tighten and compensate. Massage helps release adhesions and trigger points within and between muscles to get everything moving fluidly again. After a treatment I give personalized recommendations for therapeutic exercises and home care hydrotherapy. There is more to injury rehabilitation that just rest, ice, compression and elevation, massage is a big part of a recovery game plan. The goal is to get you back out there enjoying your athletic endeavors and avoiding re injury!

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