From beginner athletes to elite professionals, massage therapy has shown to have major benefits regardless of the participant's fitness level. Athletes seeking enhanced performance, improved conditioning, faster recovery, injury prevention and assistance in maintaining peak fitness can benefit from massage therapy. Massage has been shown to have myriad positive effects including:
Reducing muscle tension
Helping athletes monitor muscle tone
Increasing range of motion
Improving soft tissue function
Decreasing muscle stiffness and fatigue after exercise
Improving exercise performance
Decreasing delayed onset muscle soreness
Reducing breathing pattern disorders
Enhancing athletic performance
Helping prevent injuries
By combining your exercise routine with a massage therapy treatment, you will be able to train longer and harder and make the most of your workout. Not convinced? Research some of your favorite world-class athletes, and you're likely to see that a massage therapist is a key component of their strength and stamina routine.
Millions of people around the world play sports and exercise, from the elite professional athlete to the novice just starting a walking program for general health and wellness benefits. Exercise is recommended for everyone. Although other government groups in the past have recommended exercise and fitness, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services released the first official U.S. Physical Activity Guidelines in October 2008, as the official guidelines of the U.S. government. The Guidelines indicate that some activity is better than none, and then go on to make several specific recommendations:
Moderate amounts of physical activity provide substantial health benefits for all adults. This dose is defined as 150 minutes/week of moderate intensity activity such as walking, or 75 minutes of vigorous activity/week such as jogging or vigorous sports.
Additional health benefits can be obtained by doing more than the moderate dose. This higher target is described as 300 minutes of moderate intensity, 150 minutes of vigorous intensity, or combining moderate and vigorous intensity.
All adults should participate in 30 minutes of strength building exercise on two days of the week. These exercises should engage all major muscle groups.
Children and adolescents should participate in 60 minutes of physical activity each day. Most of this should be moderate to vigorous intensity activity, and should include vigorous activity at least three days/week. It also is recommended that children and adolescents participate in muscle-strengthening three days/week and bone-strengthening activities at least three days/week.
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