Is Too Much Massage Bad for You?

No matter what kind of lifestyle you need, job you work, or sports you play, you have probably at least considered the potential benefits of professional therapeutic massage. Aside from being one of the most relaxing and soothing experiences out there, high quality massage has a number of health benefits according to various medical establishments. We know, for example, that massage can improve circulation, cleanse the body’s lymphatic system, loosen up stiff muscles, and improve overall health.

In terms of what constitutes a healthy or professional-grade massage, it’s best to look for certified therapists or even licensed chiropractic offices who offer therapeutic massage as a part of their normal treatment regimen. You’ll know you’re getting a massage by someone who actually knows what they’re doing, and knows how to deliver the health benefits promised by good massage.

Ok — but what about too much massage? This is a question that often comes up as people begin to experience the benefits of this practice. Since the experience is definitely pleasant and soothing on many levels, people wonder if there can actually be too much of a good thing. Is too much therapeutic massage actually bad for you?

The answer is yes — there are certain situations in which too much massage will be counterproductive.

1. Pre-existing conditions or traumas

Massage therapy may be an effective part of the recovery process for many different types of injuries, but it’s important to proceed with care. Too much manipulation of sensitive areas (both in terms of frequency and intensity) can actually hamper the body’s natural recovery processes. If you’ve been injured and are exploring massage therapy as a tool for rehabilitation, consult a licensed chiropractor or medical professional for the best advice on how frequent and how intense your massage therapy sessions should be.

2. Therapists who use too much force

Many people report being unpleasantly sore in the hours or days following a therapeutic massage. If this ever happens, it may not be that you’re getting a massage “too often,” but rather that your massage therapy sessions are too intense. Ask your therapist to reduce the pressure. A gentle massage will usually be far more therapeutic than a hard, intense massage that leaves you sore.

3. Relying too much on massage

Although the health benefits of therapeutic massage are well-documented, it’s not a good idea to rely heavily on this form of treatment. Diet, exercise, stretching, and other wellness practices remain at the top of the list in terms of importance. If you’re simply expecting massage therapy to solve your health problems without taking action in other areas of your life, the results you experience are likely to be disappointing over the long run.

Finding that professional touch

One of the benefits of putting your massage therapy needs in the hands of a consummate professional (such as a licensed chiropractor) is that you know you’ll be getting the best advice and treatment options available, in terms of therapeutic massage. Many spas and massage outlets will basically treat you as long as you want, for as long as you like. But a healthcare professional who understands the parameters of good massage therapy will make sure you receive the right frequency of treatment, in addition to providing a massage that really is therapeutic and good for your health.