Whether you are an avid cyclist training for frequent competitions and races, just taking a friendly and relaxed ride on the weekend with a friend, or rely on a bike daily as a commuter, cycling can take a toll on your body. Although this activity requires the use of many different muscle groups, the legs bear most of the burden of pedaling you and your frame up and down whatever course you are on. To help alleviate the aches and pains that can result from leg muscle overuse, get on the massage table and begin the healing process. Massage has many benefits. It actually help prevent injuries by making sure your limbs are ready to work hard. Through massage, this means that the lactic acid build-up is flushed out of your tired and overworked muscles. This enables your body to start fresh every time and perform your best with the lowest risk of strain or injury. Massage also helps to promote faster recovery times after periods of overuse, and can get you back on a bike, riding better than you ever did before.
There are many different types of massage that focus on different areas of health and wellness. A few of the most popular modalities that cyclists should gravitate towards are:
- Swedish Massage
This type of massage includes light pressure stimulation to your muscles combined with longer strokes to help you and you relax and let go of tension. After a long ride, or even just a long day, Swedish Massage treatments are an excellent way to let the day melt away while jumpstarting your body’s natural recovery systems.
- Sports Massage
Mostly directed towards the activity-heavy crowd, Sports Massage sessions typically focus on aches and pains that are the direct result of overused and overstressed muscles. This mode of massage focuses on moving lactic acid buildup out of muscles that can help relieve muscle stiffness, increase range of motion, and heal injuries quickly.
- Deep Tissue Massage
Although a bit uncomfortable, Deep Tissue Massage helps address deep-seated muscle knots, adhesions, and tension that arise after rigorous and repetitive activity. By applying very firm pressure across the grain of your muscles, Deep Tissue Massage helps work out the hard to reach kinks that might typically keep you out of the saddle.
Cycling is an excellent form of exercise and massage is the perfect supplement. Be sure to talk openly with your local massage therapist about your specific wants and needs as each person is different. Massage and cycling can really go hand in hand in creating a positive pattern of health and wellness.