Most individuals do not have the time or the money to get a professional massage after every workout, which is why it is so important to learn how to give yourself a proper self-massage after you work out. Massages have a host of benefits, including muscle rejuvenation and stress relief. When you learn how to give yourself a self-massage, you get to take advantage of these benefits. Here is a simple guide to massaging your legs after an intense workout.
Start By Sitting Down
Most people find it easiest to massage their legs when they are sitting down on the ground with their legs stretched out in front of them. Try this position first and see if it works for you.
If that position does not work, you can try sitting down in a chair while you massage your legs. Or you can try resting one leg at a time on a bench or chair in order to more easily reach your entire leg.
Glide Your Hands Over Your Legs
Once you are in a comfortable position, you can start your leg self-massage. Take your hands and open them up and relax your fingers. Then, take your hands place them on your feet. Glide your hands all the way up your legs, making sure that you go over your calves, shins, quads and hamstrings.
You are going to want to do ten glided strokes up each leg. Start out by applying very soft pressure to your legs. Once you are about halfway through, start applying more pressure and pushing the palm of your hand into your legs, all while keeping up the gliding motion. This slow increase in intensity will help you warm up your muscles and relieve stress.
Squeeze Your Muscles
After you have finished gliding your hands over your legs, it is time to start squeezing your legs.
Start with one leg, and squeeze one toe at a time for a couple seconds each. After you have squeezed all your toes, squeeze your Achilles tendon two or three times. You put a lot of strain on your Achilles tendon when you run, so make sure you don't forget this important step.
Next, work your hands up your leg, paying particular attention to your calves and quads. You may want to squeeze these areas with both of your hands, or even press a closed fist into these muscles if they are feeling extremely tight.
Once you complete one leg, move on to the next. Work each leg about ten times.
Finish By Drumming On Your Legs
Finally, you are going to want to use a drumming motion on your legs. You can accomplish this two ways. You can open your hand and use the side of it to hit your legs, kind of like a karate chop. Or you can make a fist and use it to hit your legs in a drumming pattern. Use whichever method feels the most comfortable and natural to you.
Once again, start near your feet and work your way up, moving your hands in one of the two drumming motions described above. This motion helps stimulate your muscles and can help ease any muscles that are cramped. Work one leg, and then move onto the next.
You can very both the intensity and the speed of the drumming motion as you work each of your legs. You will want to go over each leg anywhere from five to ten times. Just don't drum your leg too aggressively; you could cause bruising.
The next time you finish a workout and start wishing you had your own personal massage therapist to help you out, try the easy leg self-massage method described above to relieve any tension and stress that you feel in your legs. If you visit a professional, you can use these tips to help them treat you in the most effective way, because you know how your body responds to massage. Check out a company like Euro Spa Of Naples for more information.