On the 24thMarch I performed pre and post event massage on runners who were participating in the Tamar Bridge 10k.
This was the second running event that I have treated at using both pre and post event massage. At this event I had my own massage bed, so on arrival I set up the couch ensuring the working environment was safe. As there were more therapists than beds we paired up so we could massage one side of the body each to save time, in order to get through more athletes. We started pre-event massage at around 8 and finished at 8.30. Pre-event is important as it can decrease muscle tension, possibly decreasing the risk of injury, enhance range of motion (ROM) as well as reducing general anxiety. When applying pre-event massage my hands moved faster and would not go deep to avoid pain for the client. I used effleurage, petrissage and in an ideal world would have used stretching but not to replace the warm up. Post event massage is different as I used slow, deeper rhythmical movements in order to reduce delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS), disperse any lactic acid and return main muscles to normal resting length.
Areas for further improvement
When I am next treating at any sporting event an improvement would be for me to ask the client if they have had any previous injuries. This is important to do as it may mean that for certain areas of the body you may have to be more cautious as there could be areas of weakness. In the future, if I was applying post event massage I would want the treatment to last longer. Because we were so busy, we were only massaging clients for approximately 3 minutes each however, in an ideal world it should last 15-20 minutes.
Things to remember
- Ask the client if they have had any previous injuries as it may alter the way you treat
- You may need a different amount of massage medium depending on the build of the client
- Pre-event massage is used to increase the temperature of the muscles whereas post event massage is a lot deeper to help remove toxins