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What Is Sports Massage Therapy?

October 11, 2014 Massage Therapy 0 Comments

If you are a sports fan and are interested in a job in healthcare, sports massage therapy could be a perfect marriage of your two passions. This type of massage is gaining popularity among athletes and is viewed as a beneficial part of a training regimen. Your work in the area will be fulfilling because it will provide your clients respite from the constant wear and tear on their bodies and perhaps give them an edge in competitions. Here is what you need to know about this exciting vocation.

What Is Sports Massage Therapy?How Will You Help Athletes Through Sports Massage?

Sports massage therapy offers an array of advantages for fitness buffs like joggers as well as professional sports players. Benefits include enhanced preparation for an athletic event and greater flexibility, along with reduced recovery time, less fatigue and increased endurance. All of these assets serve to lower the risk of injuries and promote optimal performance.

What Will Your Work Environment Be Like?

Your job environment can vary broadly and encompass both indoor and outdoor settings. Outdoor locations can involve working under a tent or canopy at marathons, track meets and bicycle races, while indoor locations can include arenas, hotel rooms, training rooms or an office. Some therapists have even had the honor of working at the Olympics.

What Are the Requisites for This Career?

Several skills and characteristics are required for your job as a massage therapist in sports. You will need to function well as a team member, understanding the role of other health practitioners. Strong communication skills are a necessity because the position involves explaining therapy to clients and coordinating treatment with other professionals. A love of travel, an inquisitive mind and physical stamina are also helpful attributes for this role.

Another requisite is a solid knowledge of anatomy, physiology and kinesiology, in addition to hydrotherapy modalities and massage techniques that address the specific problems of athletes. Your comprehension of how the human body works will enable you to determine how an injury in a joint or muscle can affect movement, posture and pain. Enrolling in a massage therapy program is the first step in acquiring the educational foundation you need.

What Are the Benefits of Working in Sports Massage Therapy?

It is uplifting to pinpoint a dysfunction and facilitate relief, enabling an athlete to perform better, said Lee Stang, L.M.T., in an interview with the American Massage Therapy Association. You will also find it satisfying to work with people who are motivated to improve their fitness and who appreciate your efforts to help them excel and avoid injuries. Another advantage that will add to your job enjoyment is the opportunity to learn from other healthcare professionals and to teach them, in turn, how massage therapy can enhance wellness.

Working in the health field is all about improving the lives of people in your care. Your career in sports massage therapy is one where you can definitely see the results of your labors.

Photo credit: Flickr

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