Why Mobility Matters and How Massage Can HelpJohn Stamoulos
“Mobility is the ability of a joint to move freely through a given range of motion (ROM) without restriction from surrounding tissues. Flexibility is defined as the ability of soft tissues (which include muscles, tendons and ligaments) to lengthen correctly, which allows a joint to move through its optimal ROM” ~ movebybjc.org
You probably don’t think too much about the gift of mobility in your life. Most of us hop out of bed in the morning, drive our car to work, and freely move through our day as we walk, sit, stand and move about. If you think about it, mobility is pretty much the key to our ability to fully function and to be independent. Movement lets us go where we want to and do what we want to. When those simple acts of personal freedom become constricted for us what can we do? And…More importantly, what can we do to maintain mobility throughout our lives?
The short answer is regular massage to encourage your body to stay flexible and maintain your mobility.
When muscles are damaged through overuse or injury, there is a reduction in blood circulation that causes tightness, restriction and constriction in tissue fluidity. As well, a more sedentary lifestyle or aging can be added factors that limit your physical ease of movement. Massage is an effective treatment to improve blood flow that will not only help relax and heal damaged muscles but will also support improved movement and function throughout connective tissue, tendons, ligaments and joints in the body.
How Massage can help:
Regular massage can be the key to keeping yourself flexible, having full range of motion and assuring your joints move without resistance. With massage, you also protect yourself from injury that can immobilize you. Massage therapy techniques work on muscles, connective tissues, tendons, ligaments, and joints by using such techniques as compression, kneading, tapping, rocking, as well as the use of pressure and friction. Such processes increase the temperature of soft tissues which promotes elasticity and reduces the constriction that adhesion’s and scar tissue can cause. It promotes the removal of waste products from the muscles which reduces swelling and relieves pain and inflammation. Massage relaxes muscles, stimulates blood and oxygen flow throughout your body so you can keep you moving and stay flexible.
Here are a few reasons to consider turning to massage to support your mobility:
- Gives you the range of motion to exercise properly and lowers your injury risk
- Increases strength by improving muscle function
- Improves posture so you move in a balanced and fluid way
- Reduces pain, especially lower back pain that is a chronic inhibitor of mobility
- Reduces muscle cramps or spasms that can prohibit full movement
- Improves your motor functions if you have physical disabilities
- Stretches and works stiff or weak muscles which are often the source of pain. With less pain, you could reduce your need for medication
- Encourages more rapid recovery post workout
- Stimulates the production of the body’s natural lubricants so you can stay flexible
- Can enhance athletic performance
When it is flexibility and mobility you seek, massage therapy is a beneficial treatment to keep you moving. Consider adding regular massage to your 2021 priorities and keep your body moving– it is well worth your wellbeing!