Our Work as massage therapists helps millions of people.  By integrating exercise into their treatment plans, we can take their healing an important step further.  All exercise programs should start with a thorough assessment.

There are two types of assessments that are important to getting your client well and keeping them that way.  The first is an injury assessment, which we have discussed many times in this column.  The second is a movement or exercise assessment–and here is where we move into new territory.  Very few massage therapists are skilled at assessing movement and prescribing exercise.  This is unfortunate because movement assessments can provide valuable information about why your client was injured by identifying predisposing factors.

Clients are often in pain because of an underlying weakness, instability, lack of mobility, and a poor understanding of how to move properly.  For example, lets say a client is experiencing lower back pain.  Normally, a massage therapist would perform soft tissue work around the hips, lower back, and perhaps the psoas muscle and then sent the client on their way.  A few days may go by with minimal pain until suddenly the person begins to feel the same symptoms that initially let them to seek treatment. 

In contrast, if the therapist had the ability to perform an exercise assessment, they could design a specific mobilization and stretching program (based on a range-of-motion assessment), teach the client how to execute a proper bend, squat, and/or lunge pattern, then teach them how to condition their body to support the demands of their work and/or sport environment.


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Sports massage was designed for athletes, but is useful for anyone with chronic pain, injury or range-of-motion issues. Sports massage was originally developed to help athletes prepare their bodies for optimal performance, recover after a big event, or function well during training. Sports massage emphasizes prevention and healing of injuries to the muscles and tendons.


But you don’t have to be in the Olympics to benefit from sports massage. Sports massage is also good for people with injuries, chronic pain or restricted range of motion. The massage therapist generally concentrates on a specific problem area.

Sports massage is a type of massage that stimulates circulation of blood and lymph fluids. Our sports massage also use trigger point therapy to break down adhesions (knots in the muscles) and increase range of motion.
Schedule your sports massage at Pro Fitness Network today!!

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What is Massage?

Massage is one of the oldest healing arts: Chinese records dating back 3,000 years document its use; the ancient Hindus, Persians and Egyptians applied forms of massage for many ailments; and Hippocrates wrote papers recommending the use of rubbing and friction for joint and circulatory problems. Today, the benefits of massage are varied and far-reaching. As an accepted part of many physical rehabilitation programs, massage therapy has also proven beneficial for many chronic conditions, including low back pain, arthritis, bursitis, fatigue, high blood pressure, diabetes, immunity suppression, infertility, smoking cessation, depression, and more. And, as many millions will attest, massage also helps relieve the stress and tension of everyday living that can lead to disease and illness.

So What Is It Exactly?
Massage, bodywork and somatic therapies are defined as the application of various techniques to the muscular structure and soft tissues of the human body. Specifically:

Massage: The application of soft-tissue manipulation techniques to the body, generally intended to reduce stress and fatigue while improving circulation. The many variations of massage account for several different techniques.

Bodywork: Various forms of touch therapies that may use manipulation, movement, and/or repatterning to affect structural changes to the body.

Somatic: Meaning “of the body.” Many times this term is used to denote a body/mind or whole-body approach as distinguished from a physiology-only or environmental perspective.

There are more than 250 variations of massage, bodywork, and somatic therapies and many practitioners utilize multiple techniques. The application of these techniques may include, but is not limited to, stroking, kneading, tapping, compression, vibration, rocking, friction, and pressure to the muscular structure or soft tissues of the human body. This may also include non-forceful passive or active movement and/or application of techniques intended to affect the energetic systems of the body. The use of oils, lotions, and powders may also be included to reduce friction on the skin.


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From injury prevention to warm up to cool down, massage therapy can benefit every part of an athletes training program.  Properly administered sports massage can improve your overal athletic readiness and treat specific problems that may be holding you back in your training.

Pain Reduction Massage can help reduce the pain from recovering injuries or tight areas of your muscle.  Massage also promotes the proper healing of scar tissue and provides a soothing effect to any injured areas.

Injury Prevention:  During your massage, your muscles will be stretched and your joints will be moved through their proper range of motion.  This acts just like a pre-event warm up.  The massage ensures that your muscles are in a pliable state and that your joints are warmed up and ready to go.  Limber muscles and joints at the start of your event help prevent injury during the physical exertion.

Relaxation and Focus:  A massage can help you “bring it” to your game or athletic event.  A massage decreases stress and increases focus, which can put you in a good phychological state before your event.  The brisk movements incorporated into the massage can also leave you with a feeling of invigoration, which you can carry to the event.

Post-Event Recovery:  If your muscles are sore and tired after a sports event.  massage can help the healing process.  Massage mimics the normal flow of the lymphatic and circulatory system, which drain wastes from the muscle tissue.  Massage can help dissolve waste fluids such as lactic acid and lead to a shorter recovery time.


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Massage and Stress

Experts estimate that 80 percent to 90 percent of disease is stress-related. Massage and bodywork is there to combat that frightening number by helping us remember what it means to relax. The physical changes massage brings to your body can have a positive effect in many areas of your life. Besides increasing relaxation and decreasing anxiety, massage lowers your blood pressure, increases circulation, improves recovery from injury, helps you to sleep better and can increase your concentration. It reduces fatigue and gives you more energy to handle stressful situations.


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Great Massage Testimonial

Here is a recent testimonial from one of our loyal clients:

I have been working out with Carina, my personal trainer at Pro Fitness Network for 3 years.  After standing on my feet as a hairstylist for the past couple of years, I started receiving regular massages at Pro Fitness Network.  The massage is a combination of myofacial release, deep tissue, and trigger point therapy.  What I really like about the massage from my massage therapist is that she really works with my knots and problem areas.  She spends a lot of time on my shoulders and neck, where most of my stress is carried.  Compared to my old massage place, Pro Fitness Network is much more reasonable.


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