Massage and Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness

An article from Cornell shows that a massage twenty minutes after vigorous exercise can help reduce muscle soreness two days later.

Athletes use muscle soreness to guide them in their training programs. Most athletes train by taking a hard workout that damages muscles enough to make them feel sore on the next day. Then the athlete takes easier workouts until the soreness goes away. When the soreness is gone, the athlete takes a harder workout again.

Nobody knows how a massage helps muscles recover faster. However, if further studies confirm this one, a massage twenty minutes after exercising vigorously will be used to help athletes recover faster so they can do more work. The massage does not make muscles stronger, but the athlete who can take more frequent workouts can build stronger muscles.

The effects of massage on delayed onset muscle soreness. British Journal of Sports Medicine, 2003, Vol 37, Iss 1, pp 72-75. JE Hilbert, GA Sforzo, T Swensen. Swensen T, Hlth Sci Ctr, Dept Exercise & Sport Sci, Ithaca,NY 14850 USA

Checked 8/23/11

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