Benefits Of Combined Massage And Chiropractic Treatment
If you’re reading this article, you are probably already familiar with either massage therapy, or chiropractic care. Both are common treatment methods for musculoskeletal pain or injury, but there is growing research that shows when combining them, they can provide patients a better path to recovery. For athletes, massage therapy and chiropractic care can also aid in injury prevention and increase performance.
According to data collected by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, almost 20% of adult Americans are regularly active, participating in sports or other physical activities. So even if you don’t consider your level of activity on par with a college athlete, your body and your fitness goals could benefit from the combined treatment of massage therapy and chiropractic care.
How massage therapy benefits the body
Therapeutic massage works the soft tissues in the body. Repeated motion works out toxins, relieves inflammation in tight or strained muscles, and works fluids through these tissues for improved circulation.
Sports massage is more targeted, focusing on stretching and loosening tight, overworked muscles, as well as activating dormant muscles. Pre-event sports massage helps to warm up muscles for improved flexibility, endurance and performance by increasing blood flow. Post-event massage can treat microtraumas, reduce cramping, and increase flexibility after intense exercise. Treating the muscles with massage after exertion can decrease recovery time if injury does occur.
How chiropractic care benefits the body
Chiropractic adjustment is the manipulation of the joints and skeletal structures in the body to improve flexibility, range of motion, and muscle development. Adjusting the spine can also improve nerve function. During the chiropractic adjustment, manipulation can release pent-up energy within the joints. The “pop” or “snap” sound that escapes the joints is known as cavitation, and is totally safe and natural.
As joints and bones are moved by muscles and ligaments throughout everyday life, they can be pushed beyond the ideal alignment for a comfortable range of motion or peak performance. Over time, this alignment leads to imbalanced posture and in severe cases, muscular disorders like Upper Cross Syndrome.
Sports chiropractic care in particular focuses on improving muscle development, performance, and balance. A sports chiropractor can advise on how you should be moving your body during physical activities for improved performance. Studies have shown that sports chiropractic care aides in decreased recovery time for athletic injury and improved performance over time.
How massage therapy plus chiropractic care benefits the body
When chiropractic and massage treatments are combined, your physician and the therapist will work as a team to create the best treatment outcomes. Our chiropractors discuss desired goals and outcomes with the massage therapist prior to treatment so the patient will receive highly specified care to help enhance overall body mechanics.
Combining massage and chiropractic adjustments has been shown to lead to a more effective adjustment, as the loosened muscles “hold” the adjustment better over time. Muscles that have been subjected to targeted massage prior to adjustment are more prone to improved posture or positioning when patients follow recommended exercises and motions in between adjustments. Your doctor will help you determine if staggering your therapies or combining on the same day will provide you with the best outcome.
Often, when nerve impingement occurs the muscles around the impingement tighten, causing pain, stiffness, or decreased range of motion. Doctors of chiropractic often work on the soft tissues in order to be able to safely perform adjustments, but a more extensive massage session prior to adjustment has been shown to lead to better outcomes.
Massage therapy after adjustment has shown benefit for some patients, as loose muscles can better retain the adjustment.
Both treatments lead to a stronger immune system, improved circulation, and reduced stress or tension within the body. For athletes, weekend warriors or casually fit individuals, combining chiropractic care with massage therapy can benefit your performance and bodily wellbeing better than just one treatment alone.
To get started with a combined treatment, schedule your appointment with Epic Wellness.