Our massage therapists, practitioners, and trainers are all frequently asked how often our Members should receive a massage. Is it something you only need when you’re injured? Should you get a massage a couple of times a year? The reality is there isn’t a straightforward, single answer that works for everyone, but this is the perfect time for us to discuss preventative maintenance.
What is preventative maintenance?
You already know about preventative maintenance in terms of your car and home, but, just in case you don’t, preventative maintenance is the idea of doing something in order to prevent issues from happening in the future. In terms of massage, preventative maintenance is the idea that an individual goes for treatment, not because they are injured but because they are trying to prevent injuries from happening. Most people already engage in preventative maintenance for their health, thanks to their doctors and chiropractors, but oftentimes only schedule a massage when they are in pain or injured?
And who can benefit from these maintenance massages? Everyone! The old, the young, those who live active lives and those who are more sedentary – everyone.
Benefits of preventative maintenance massage
If you live an active life, which we know our Members do, there will come a time when your muscles become fatigued and your joints are worn out – so you need to be proactive. The benefits of getting frequent and regular massages, beyond relaxation, are:
- Healthier muscles
- Increased range of mobility
- Prevention of serious muscle wear and tear
- Improved posture
How often should you get a massage?
Ideally, everyone should be getting a massage once a week, or at least once every two weeks. But this guideline changes if you are recovering from an injury – where you may be required to get massages once a week for 4 weeks, for example, and then get a reassessment to see how the injury is progressing.
Typically, our Members are strong, meaning your muscles can handle a lot of activity. Sometimes, we experience a bit of pain or might be a little bit hurt, but we won’t get it treated immediately. Instead, we wait to see if the pain develops into something that we consider to be noteworthy – which, in many cases, is 6+ months after we experienced the initial discomfort. By this time, what was once a small issue has compounded into something more serious and will take more work with our therapists to rectify. This is why preventative maintenance is important – while you’re not as hurt, we can treat your injury as it progresses (if it even progresses). You’ll feel better and remain healthier.
However, note there are alternative treatments that work well with massage for your condition, including (but not limited to) chiro, ultrasound, shockwave therapy, acupuncture, fascial stretch therapy, etc. Some injuries are best treated with a combination of massage and these alternative treatments, so please discuss your injuries directly with your therapists to determine the best course of action for you.
Regular treatment vs. on-the-spot sessions
How your body responds to regular treatment and on-the-spot sessions will depend on you. Typically, on-spot sessions usually just stop the pain right there, it doesn’t address the whole issue. For example, these on-the-spot sessions can be effective with cramping, as a therapist can immediately treat your muscle.
However, with acute and chronic pain, regular treatment can improve how your body functions. If the injury is acute with inflammation, the goal of the treatment would be to reduce the inflammation; by getting regular treatment, you can keep your inflammation down and reduce the pain. With chronic injuries, our therapists can treat whatever is causing the most pain initially and then as you regularly receive treatment, they’ll be able to focus on the underlying issues.
We aren’t trying to claim that massage is a “solve all” treatment, it will fall on clients to make necessary changes to improve their health (i.e. adjusting posture, learning proper techniques for exercises, etc.), and many may need to incorporate additional treatments to supplement their massage therapy, but massage can be the start.
To set-up your appointment for a maintenance massage, please contact our Clinics and the Adelaide Spa.
Adelaide Health Clinic | firstname.lastname@example.org
Adelaide Spa | email@example.com
Cambridge Club | firstname.lastname@example.org
Sport Medicine Clinic | email@example.com
Victor Alviso, Registered Massage Therapist, The Cambridge Club