Sports Massage

Soreness after a Sports Massage: What You Need to Know

After a strenuous workout or competition, athletes often experience muscle soreness and fatigue. A sports massage is a popular treatment to relieve these symptoms and promote recovery. However, many people wonder how long they may feel sore or uncomfortable after a sports massage. This article answers that question, including the factors contributing to post-massage soreness and its duration.

What Is a Sports Massage?

Sports massage is a specialized massage therapy that targets the muscles and soft tissues used in physical activity. It uses methods like trigger point therapy, deep tissue massage, and stretching to reduce muscle tension, improve circulation, and promote relaxation. Sports massage can be used to treat a range of conditions, including injuries, muscle strains, and soreness.

What Causes the Soreness?

Post-massage soreness is one of the common side effects of getting a sports massage. The release of tension within the muscles and soft tissues generally causes this soreness. During a massage, the therapist applies pressure to the affected areas, which cause micro-tears in the muscle fibers. These small tears are a natural response to the pressure and help stimulate the healing process.

How Long Does It Last?

In general, post-massage soreness is a normal response to a sports massage. However, the duration and intensity of the soreness can vary depending on several factors, including:


      • The intensity of the massage

      • The duration of the massage

      • The area of the body being massaged

      • The individual’s pain threshold and sensitivity

      • The individual’s level of physical activity before and after the massage

    For some people, post-massage soreness may only last a few hours or a day. For others, it may persist for several days or even a week. The intensity of the soreness can also range from mild discomfort to severe pain.

    Tips for Minimizing Post-Massage Soreness

    While some post-massage soreness is to be expected, there are several ways to minimize its duration and intensity.


      1. Stay Hydrated: Drinking water before and after your massage can flush out toxins and reduce muscle soreness.

      2. Take a Warm Bath or Shower: Soaking in warm water will relax your muscles and reduce soreness.

      3. Use Heat Therapy: Using a warm compress or heating pad on the affected area can increase blood flow and reduce soreness.

      4. Get Plenty of Rest: Giving your body time to rest and recover is essential for reducing post-massage soreness.

      5. Stretch: Gentle stretching can help alleviate muscle soreness and improve flexibility.

      When to Seek Medical Attention

      While post-massage soreness is common after a sports massage, there are some cases where it may indicate a more serious problem. If you have or experience the following symptoms, see a doctor at once:


          • Severe or prolonged pain

          • Swelling or inflammation

          • Bruising or discoloration

          • Numbness or tingling

          • Limited range of motion

        These symptoms may indicate an injury or underlying medical condition that requires prompt medical attention.

        Key Takeaway

        Post-massage soreness is a common side effect of sports massage. While the duration and intensity of the soreness can vary depending on several factors, it’s generally an expected response to the treatment. By staying hydrated, using heat therapy, getting plenty of rest, and seeking medical attention when necessary, you can help minimize post-massage soreness and promote a faster recovery.

        Get a much-needed sports recovery massage in Culver City at MetaTouch. Our experienced massage therapists are trained to help clients manage post-massage soreness and promote a faster recovery. We will work with you to create a treatment plan that addresses your needs and goals. Call us at (310) 397-3422 to book an appointment!

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