Self-Care – Looking After Yourself Between Massages
Wouldn’t it be amazing if we could have a massage every day of the
week? Right now we can make the most of massage treatments by taking care of ourselves in between massages.
First rule – drink the water!
There’s a reason why your therapist gives you a refreshing glass of cool
water after a treatment; it’s to help hydrate your body and keep your
muscles relaxed. Water is great for your skin and your muscles, plus
staying hydrated can even help to prevent headaches.
Keep up the stretching
It’s a very common problem, but there’s a very simple solution…if you
are one of the many people who feel achy and tight after a day at work,
If you make a habit of including stretching in your daily routine, it will
really help you with any muscle aches and soreness, and will make the
effects of your massage last longer. In between sessions, having a good stretch helps support the work that’s been done to relax your muscles on the treatment table. It doesn’t matter when you fit your stretches in, as long as you make a habit of it.
Stretches shouldn’t ever hurt, so don’t overdo it. Easing into stretches
gently, and holding them for at least a minute will give you better
results than shorter, deeper stretches.
Epsom salt baths are great for keeping any muscle aches and stiff joints
at bay – they contain magnesium which is also good for relieving stress.
To prevent soreness after a massage, add Epsom salts to your bath as
directed and relax.
Feeling hot and cold
In between massages you might start feeling that tell-tale build-up of
tension – nip it in the bud with heat therapy. Applying heat can help to
sooth aching muscles and relieve any tightness and tension. Heat can
also improve and stimulate blood flow to the area. Try a heat pad, or
heat up a damp towel in the microwave using 30 second intervals to check the temperature.
If you injure yourself in between massage sessions, try using cold therapy to numb the pain. Cold therapy is good for strains, sprains and other minor injuries (if you’re unsure, or are in serious pain, see your healthcare provider).
For severe pain and/or swelling, take a cold pack (or you can use a
frozen bottle of water, or even frozen vegetables in a bag) and wrap it
in a towel to avoid cold burns. If you’re using a frozen bottle as a cold
pack, a thick sock works well as a barrier, if you’ve been overdoing
it and you have sore feet, try rolling the frozen bottle under your foot.
You can alternate between hot and cold therapy but always leave a
period in between for your body to adjust.
One last and very important tip; make your massage sessions part of your regular self-care routine. If you’re unsure about how often you
need a massage, the best person to ask is your therapist. She will know
if you need extra sessions or just maintenance care, and will make sure