Importance of Strength Training & Body Treatment Together
Morgan Ekovich- Get Fit with ME Virtual Personal & Small Group Training
Kevin McVay - Tri-Covery Massage & Flexibility
Combining your strength training program with regular body treatments will have you reaching goals faster, easier and without injuries!
Strength training will help you build muscle around your bones and joints which overtime will help stabilize your body in the correct alignment. It is important that after body treatment that you work on building muscle around the correct posture and alignment. Doing so will allow you to move with less pain, have better workouts, and recover faster. Chronic pain may start to disappear, your bones will get stronger and any joint flare up could become less frequent. Trying to work in strength training 2-3 times a week for 20-30 minutes will help you see the most progress.
You want to work five main muscle groups when it comes to corrective exercise:
1: Frontal Upper Body - Push movement; an example is a push up or chest press.
2: Posterior Upper Body - A pull movement example would be a unilateral or bilateral row.
3: Posterior Lower Body - Squat movement in the form of a sumo squat, sit to stands, or lunges.
4. Frontal Lower Body - A hinge movement; glute bridge, kettlebell swings, and deadlifts.
5. Core - “Groundwork”, is core stabilization and strengthening of the abdominal area and back.
Ways to do these movements are through bodyweight, resistance bands, free weight, or weight machine. Depending on your level of experience, your mobility and your lifestyle will determine which level to start at when it comes to strength training.
Implementing soft-tissue body treatment is an important part of the recovery process for anyone that exercises. Massage is used to speed recovery following heavy single workouts, competitions, or during high-intensity cycles. Massage also plays a part in the prevention of injury, especially those that might arise due to overuse and overload. And finally, we can’t forget the importance of massage in the injury rehabilitation process.
The ultimate impact of sports massage therapy is to increase the health of the body's internal tissues by improving circulation of blood and nutrients, while simultaneously removing toxins.
Stretching of the tissues during a massage helps muscle fibers release tension and pressure build up. The massage helps stretch muscles lengthwise and sideways along the natural flow of circulation and the muscle tissues.
Benefit 1- Flexibility:
Massage and stretch therapy will improve flexibility. For a lifter to achieve optimal performance, he or she must exhibit a high degree of flexibility. Since massage therapy stretches the muscle fibers, flexibility is promoted and maintained. High volume or intensity training cycles and competition usually lead to increased muscle tension. The effects here may include disturbances of collagen scar tissue and development of various adhesions where the muscle, fascia, and other tissues stubbornly stick together. If this happens you will experience a reduction in overall flexibility and an increased chance of injury.
It should also be remembered that all muscles even when they do become overly tight, do not become so to the same extent all over the body. Tightness in one muscle group may not be balanced off by a similar degree of tightness in the opposing muscles. If not attended to, this can cause a permanent imbalance in the muscles. We see the best example of this occurring with bench pressers. They have well-developed pecs that are often in a permanently tight condition. The opposing muscles in their back are not always as well developed or as highly maintained. The result is the bench presser's hunched-over posture, familiar to anyone who has spent time in an elite power gym.
Benefit 2 - Circulation:
Massage therapy improves circulation, and with better circulation the lifter can breathe easier and move more smoothly. Heavy training cycles cause microscopic damage (micro-trauma) to the muscle and fascial tissue. That damage must be repaired via increased blood flow (i.e., nourishment). Since massage helps the blood flow, the circulation of the lifter will be improved and this will enhance his or her performance levels. This will have a great impact on lymphatic and blood circulation, influencing waste removal from these areas, as well as food and oxygen supply to these areas. All of this leads to faster recovery and an earlier return to effective training.
Benefit 3 - Pain reduction:
Massage alleviates muscular pain, whether caused by overwork or injury. If an athlete is in pain, he or she will not be able to approach maximum results. Chronic or acute pain unavoidably psyches out the lifter. The less pain that is felt, the better the lifter will perform. Pain is a signal that something is wrong, so that will have to be dealt with. Massage will often be part of the required therapy.
Benefit 4 - Sleep Improvement:
As we already know, sleep is another big part of the recovery process. Massage therapy promotes better sleep patterns. Massage can actually improve the quantity and quality of sleep. By getting more and deeper sleep, the athlete will be better able to perform at his or her best. The lifter who goes to bed in a high-tension state will have difficulty getting to sleep and may often wake during the night or wake too early. All of this compromises recovery. Massage will reduce some of that tension and promote deeper and longer sleep. Volume and intensity are not just important in your training. They apply to sleep parameters as well.
Benefit 5 - Decreased Tension:
Massage therapy increases muscle relaxation levels. By having a deep tissue massage on a regular basis, lifters can keep their muscles healthy, improve their flexibility, maintain a state of relaxation and thus have a better sleep cycle. It is worth considering if you are having problems recovering from workouts. Massage therapy can also help to identify potential trouble spots before they progress into something more serious. A skilled touch may reveal those soft tissue micro-injuries. So, treat yourself to a massage and your body and your performance may thank you for it.
Try this beginner, no equipment, strength training workout:
Complete 10 reps of each exercise, repeating the circuit 2-3 times depending on your level of experience.
Wall push ups
Elbows at a 45-degree angle away from your body, core and glutes are engaged. The further your feet are from the wall the more difficult.
Stand up straight, shoulders back and down, hips are tucked, extend your arms out in front of your body so there is still a slight bend in the elbow. Squeeze your shoulder blades together and pull your arms back to your sides so your palms finish at and facing the ribs.
Sit to stands
Feet shoulder width apart, slight outward point with your toes. Engage your core, push through your heels and your big toes. Squeeze your glutes and quads to stand. Control your speed and slowly make your way back to seated position.
Lay on your back, feet on the ground hip width apart. Press your lower back into the ground and squeeze your core, push through your heels, squeeze your glutes and lift your hips, trying not to arch your back. Slowly lower back to starting position.
Heel taps (10 total)
Lay on the ground, knees in the air at 90 degrees. Press your lower back into the ground lowering one heel at a time, alternating from side to side. Slow and controlled, keeping your lower back pressed into the ground the whole time.
Then after each workout, make sure to stretch the areas worked. Hold each stretch for 30-60 seconds for 2-3 sets. It would be advantageous to also soak in an Epsom salt bath for 20 minutes. This promotes healing and helps to reduce inflammation.
For specific stretches and helpful at-home tips for recovery visit: www.tri-covery.com
For online training and exercise tips visit: www.getfitwithme-morganekovich.com