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  • Writer's pictureVisacova Santé

Why Choose Massotherapy in Summer?



Summer Massage

May 13, 2024  |  by Visacova Santé |


With the arrival of warmer weather, we all want to spend as much time outdoors as possible, enjoying the summer climate. While massage therapy is beneficial year-round, here's why it's particularly helpful during the summer:


– Relief from heavy legs, edema, and water retention;

– Alleviation of neck stiffness and headaches;

– Reduction of muscle cramps;

– Relief from lower back pain.


Let's explore each of these points in detail while highlighting massage therapy techniques that are particularly beneficial during the summer season.


Why Get a Massage in Summer?


Relief from Heavy Legs, Edema, and Water Retention

Heavy legs are often caused by venous insufficiency, leading to a sensation of heaviness and tingling in the lower limbs. Heat and sun exposure can exacerbate this circulatory problem by causing vasodilation(vasodilation is the widening of blood vessels, leading to increased blood flow.) Swedish massage is effective in relieving heavy legs by improving blood and lymphatic circulation. Your massage therapist may also use specific techniques such as manual fluid drainage to address this issue.


It's essential to stay well-hydrated in summer to prevent or reduce water retention. Heat, alcohol, and salt tend to dehydrate our bodies, which can lead to water retention. Drinking enough water helps maintain fluid balance. However, water retention can be caused by various factors, so consulting with a healthcare professional is recommended.


Effects of Heat and Air Conditioning: Prone to Neck Stiffness and Headaches

The contrast between outdoor heat and air conditioning can cause neck pain and stiffness. Whether at work or home, air conditioning airflow is often poorly directed, affecting the neck and shoulders. A muscle constantly cooled tends to contract to warm up, explaining much of the pain felt in the neck area. Ideally, it's recommended to maintain a maximum of an eight-degree difference between outdoor and indoor temperatures. You can also cover up to avoid direct drafts on unprotected areas.


Moreover, contraction of neck muscles due to temperature contrasts can lead to cervical nerve pain, causing headaches, also known as tension headaches. A massage therapy session can relax the muscles of the shoulder girdle and promote relaxation.


Muscle Cramps

Warmer weather often encourages more intense physical activity, which is great! However, whether it's regular sports or occasional activity, it's essential to warm up properly and stretch afterward. Muscle cramps typically occur due to a lack of warm-up or stretching, dehydration, mineral deficiency (potassium, magnesium, or calcium), or circulatory problems.


Intense activity on a hot day can lead to heat cramps due to excessive sweating. Even if you stay hydrated, you may lose mineral salts. For example, athletes who don't replace lost salts, such as soccer players drinking only water during a 30-degree match, are likely to suffer from heat cramps. Physical workers exposed to heat, such as construction workers, chefs, or miners, are also at risk.


To relieve these cramps, a massage with lavender or marjoram essential oils, combined with stretching, may be recommended. A warm bath with Epsom salt can also revitalize the body. If cramps are frequent, magnesium supplementation may be considered after medical consultation.


Lower Back Pain

Whatever your summer plans, they may often involve activities that strain the lower back muscles: road trips (with hotel or camping stays), outdoor yard work, gardening, etc.


An uncomfortable mattress and long periods of sitting can cause lower back pain. During these activities, it's recommended to take regular breaks and stretch. In the car, take breaks to stretch your legs and do some stretching. You can also place a rolled towel in the small of your back to support the lumbar region during trips. We always advise our clients to have a massage before and after their trips to facilitate their recovery.


If you're more sedentary but spring motivates you to work in your garden, remember that gardening can be quite physical. Warm up properly, take regular breaks, and stretch afterward. A good massage after these activities will benefit your muscles, especially Sarcomere massage, which is ideal for relieving muscle tension.


Massage Therapy Techniques and Their Benefits

While all types of massage have benefits throughout the year, some techniques are particularly suitable for summer:


Swedish Therapeutic Massage: This relaxing and effective technique targets muscle stiffness and tension while improving blood and lymphatic circulation.


Deep Tissue Massage: Highly appreciated by clients, this technique, also known as deep tissue, slowly stretches connective tissues to reach the deep layers of muscles.


Sarcomere Massage: Focused and precise, this therapeutic approach targets specific areas of concern, providing relief by addressing underlying muscle issues.


Flexiotherapy: This technique focuses on assisted stretching and pressure points to improve flexibility and alleviate muscle tension. By targeting specific areas, it helps release tightness and enhance range of motion.


By increasing blood and lymphatic circulation, these therapies can help with faster recovery for athletes, cyclists, and runners.


In Summary

In conclusion, there are various discomforts and issues more prevalent in summer. As discussed in this article, our therapy techniques are very effective in these conditions. It's also important to remember that staying well-hydrated, warming up, and stretching are key elements to practice in hot weather. If you have any questions about which type of therapy would be best suited to your needs, I encourage you to discuss them with your therapist. Visacova Santé is your health ally to support you in your summer activities.


Have a great summer!

Visacova Santé


 

Doctissimo, Heavy legs: how to cope with summer and heat?, [Online], https://www.doctissimo.fr/html/dossiers/jambes_lourdes/sa_7750_jambes_lourdes_ete.htm

Quebec Professional Massage Therapists Network, Deep Tissue Massage, [Online], https://rmpq.ca/techniques-et-bienfaits-de-la-massotherapie/techniques-reconnues/massage-tissus-profonds/

Kinésis Institute, Myth #1: Deep Tissue Massage is just Swedish Massage but stronger, [Online], https://massage-deeptissue.com/le-massage-deep-tissue-cest-du-massage-suedois-mais-en-plus-fort/

The Réseau des massothérapeutes professionnels du Québec (2021), [Online], https://rmpq.ca/en/

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