Sports Massage for Sciatica Pain

What is Sciatica?

Sciatica is a nerve pain that starts in the lower back and travels down to the hips, buttock, thigh and leg. It usually affects one side of the body.

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Common Symptoms of Sciatica

Pain – This is the most common symptom in sciatica and the type of pain experienced can vary from a mild ache to shooting pain from the lower back right down to the leg, which can be sharp and excruciating.

Numbness – There can also be numbness, tingling pain or feeling weak in the lower part of the body.

One-sided pain – Usually, sciatica occurs on just one side of the body.

Causes of Sciatica

There are several causes of sciatica nerve pain – some which may be related to underlying medical conditions and others to lifestyle factors:

Physical stress injury – Sciatica may result from nerve compression due to sports injury, motor vehicle accidents, falls or any trauma with direct impact on the sciatica nerve.

Degeneration of spine – With aging, the degeneration of tissues in the lumbar spine can cause compression of the sciatic nerve, which leads to inflammation and pain experienced.

Obesity – With excess body weight, this can put unnecessary stress on the spine and indirectly triggers changes to the spine, which leads to sciatica.

Sedentary lifestyle – Sitting for prolonged periods or for those who work in desk-bound jobs are also prone to sciatica as compared to those who lead a more active lifestyle.

How Does Sports Massage Help Sciatica Nerve Pain?

If you are seeking for more natural healing methods for sciatica pain instead of relying on painkillers, you can try myofascial sports massage for its numerous benefits.

Myofascial sports massage therapy is not only an effective way to relieve pain, it also helps to relax tense muscles, which will reduce the pressure on the nerves that is causing inflammation and pain.

Using focused pressure and long, deep strokes to reach myofascial tissues, which are the tough membrane that supports your muscles – it is very effective in reducing pain and stiffness in the muscles.

Myofascial sports massage focuses mainly on the connective tissues (fascia) that holds and supports the muscles in the body. Using kneading and long strokes on the muscles, this helps to relax contracted muscles and stimulate the ‘stretch reflex’ in the muscles.

Benefits of Myofascial Sports Massage

Relief tightness and tension in lower back and leg
Improves lymphatic and blood circulation in the body
Reduces inflammation in the nerves for better pain relief
Reduces stress hormones and boost “feel-good” endorphins

What Helps In Faster Recovery from Sciatica Pain
If your sciatica nerve pain stems from a sports injury or lifestyle factors, there are small changes that you can make everyday to speed up your recovery.

Adopt better posture – Be mindful about your sitting and standing posture by keeping your back straight so as to avoid unnecessary pressure and compression to your spine. For sports that may involve pressure on the spine and awkward postures, e.g. cycling and weightlifting; it is best to schedule a myofascial sports massage before and after your sporting event. This will help to prevent muscle tension and stiffness.

Relaxation for stress relief – In addition to getting regular myofascial sports massage to loosen tight muscles, it is also helpful to inculcate a relaxation ritual into your daily routine. Spend from 10minutes up to one hour each day (depending on how much time you need to get yourself into a state of relaxation) and focus on observing the stress areas in your body. Use belly breathing techniques to visualize stress and fatigue being released from your body with every exhale. Besides breathing exercise, you can also opt for any activity that you find relaxing, e.g. burning of essential oils, listening to music, or taking a shower.

Get quality sleep – Set up your sleep environment so that it is conducive for deep rest. Dimming the lights, playing relaxing, soft background music and putting away digital devices (blue light affects your sleep quality) at least one hour before bedtime will help you sleep more easily.

Eat a balanced meal – Getting proper nutrition for your body will also speed up the healing process. Ensure you have a balanced diet of fresh fruits and greens, along with foods rich in protein such as fish and meat to promote tissue healing.

Hydrate well – With any myofascial sports massage that you do, it is essential to drink lots of water to aid in flushing out of the lymphatic waste after the massage. Drink at least 8-10 glasses of pure water to also promote better circulation within your body.

How to Get Optimal Benefits from Myofascial Sports Massage

Generally, myofascial sports massage has very little risks and is most beneficial for relaxation and easing sciatica nerve pain.

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It is always best to talk to your massage therapist before the myofascial sports massage session. Remember to highlight about your sciatica nerve pain condition so that your therapist can assess and use the most suitable massage techniques for you. Your therapist can also focus more attention on your pain area so that you get the most benefits from the massage session.

For professional myofascial sports massage to relieve sciatica nerve pain, book your service with Zen Room Myofascial Therapy today.

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