Between teaching classes and my personal workouts, some part of my body is always sore. Weekly massages have worked wonders in reducing my muscle soreness and recovery time and have significantly relieved the tightness in my lower back. My lower back muscles are naturally tight, so I got my doctor to write me a prescription for weekly massages so I can use my FSA (flex spending account) through my health insurance to pay for my massages. If you’re not familiar with FSA, it allows you to pay for out of pocket medical expenses with pre-tax dollars. Check with your HR Benefits rep to see if you’re eligible for an FSA account. It’s a great way to save money by reducing your taxable income.
~ Coach MaShelle
Which is Better…Massage or Rest?
Book a rubdown. It’s good for our muscles and may reduce soreness, says Mark Tarnopolsky, MD, director of the neuromuscular and neurometabolic clinic at McMaster University Medical Center. “Muscles contain pressure sensors that respond to stimulation. A session as short as 10 minutes can decrease inflammation and rev up the growth of mitochondria, the powerhouses of cells,” he explains.
The pressure won’t do damage (it’s a myth that massaging sore muscles can cause internal bleeding), but it may feel slightly uncomfortable, especially at first. Make an appointment with a pro for the day after a big race. If you’re really tender, request “gentle pressure” to relieve pain and speed recovery. To rebound after your regular workouts, invest in a foam roller, which Dr. Tarnopolsky says can mimic the beneficial effects of massage. (article from Self magazine)