Looking for a Legal Performance Enhancer? Try a Massage | STACK
X

Become a Better Athlete. Sign Up for Our FREE Newsletter.

Looking for a Legal Performance Enhancer? Try a Massage

February 21, 2012 | Randi Weitzman

Must See Sports Injuries Videos

A massage always feels good after a tension-filled day or an intense workout. Now, Canadian researchers have found that a simple 10-minute massage after a 70-minute workout may have real performance benefits.

In the February issue of the journal Science Translational Medicine, researcher Dr. Mark Tarnopolsky of McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario, describes a study in which 11 young men exercised to exhaustion, after which only one of each participant's legs was massaged. The researchers took tissue samples from both legs over a period of time. In the massaged muscle tissues, they found a reduction in inflammation and an increase in mitochondria, an energy source that keeps the body going during increased activity.

The study, combined with previous research suggesting that massages can help boost the body's immune system, is helping to change the post-game massage from a feel-good treatment to a legitimate performance enhancer. If a 10-minute massage can help you feel better for the next day and come out stronger in the second half, why not take a few minutes to knead your muscles in the locker room?

Even if you lack access to a professional masseur or masseuse, you can always massage yourself by running your hands along your muscles, looking for knots. Once you find one, simply rub in a circular motion with two of your fingers for a minute or two to release it. Many trainer also recommend foam rolling, both before and after a workout, to loosen muscles and remove toxins. (Read more about foam rollers.)

Treat yourself to a post-activity massage and find out for yourself whether it helps you perform better the next day. Let us know your results on our Facebook page or by tweeting us @STACKMedia.

Photo:  aileenross.com

Topics: NEWS
More Cool Stuff You'll Like

Tips for Working Out With a Hand or Arm Injury

Going into the gym is tough, and it is even more difficult to mentally muster up the strength to do so if you have an arm injury or hand injury. So if...

The Secret Weapon Powering Stephen Curry's Resurgence

Cardale Jones Returns to Ohio State University

8 of the Most Ridiculous Off-Field Athlete Injuries of All Time

Will Joel Embiid Be Able to Succeed in the NBA?

6 Simple Tips to Prevent Knee Injuries

5 Bodyweight Exercises to Prevent Baseball Injuries

Nike Unveils 2015 Pro Bowl Uniforms

How to Bench Press With a Shoulder Injury

What You Need to Know About Tiger Woods' Back Injury

How to Prevent Injuries With 3 Yoga Poses

Achilles Tendon Ruptures: Prevention and Recovery

Quarterbacks: 4 Tips to Keep Your Throwing Shoulder Healthy

The Future of Sports Injury Rehabilitation

How to Fix Anterior Pelvic Tilt

Impressive Advances in ACL Rehab

Why a Sports Hernia Won't Ruin Jadeveon Clowney's Rookie Season

Study Ranks Paleo As Second-Worst Diet

How to Avoid Softball Pitching Injuries

6 Steps for Recovering From a Season-Ending Injury

Predicting the Impact of DeMarco Murray's Hand Injury

3 Reasons to Correct Your Weak Links to Prevent Common Injuries

Pectoral Tendon Ruptures and Injury Prevention

Outsmart Injury With These 4 Predictive Tests

6 Ways to Prevent Common Sports Injuries

The 8 Most Dangerous Exercises for Your Shoulders

4 Sports Massage Techniques to Relieve Tight Muscles

3 Ways to Protect Your Knees and Prevent ACL Injuries

How to Keep Your Feet Healthy On and Off the Field

10 Ways to Fix Back Pain

How to Protect Yourself From Heat Stroke This Summer

adidas Set to Drop the D Lillard 1

adidas Unveils New Ultra Boost Running Shoe

2 Ways to Fix Anterior Pelvic Tilt

5 Tips to Intelligently Train Through Lower Back Pain

3 Ways to Prevent the Most Common Hockey Injury

Evan Gattis's Protection-Enhanced Catcher's Helmet

Connective Tissue: The Key to Preventing ACL Injuries

Avoid Low-Back Pain With These 7 In-Season Exercises

Prevent ACL Injuries With This Hamstring-Focused Workout

3 Causes of Recurring Hamstring Injuries

How Cristiano Ronaldo Can Defeat the Witch Doctor's Curse

NHL All-Stars Drop In For a Game of Sledge Hockey

Why Strengthening This Muscle May Fix Knee Pain

Under Armour Introduces the Curry One

4 Strategies to Prevent Tommy John Surgery

Bulletproof Your Body with 5 Easy Injury Prevention Exercises

5 Exercises to Prevent ACL Tears

How to Prevent Baseball Injuries During the Off-Season