If you’ve ever dealt with sciatic pain before, you know that it can be a crippling experience. It stops you from your runs, from training, and often from just standing and sitting comfortably.
Pain medication helps, but some people don’t want to rely on pain killers to keep us hitting those tennis balls and competing in marathons. If you’re wondering will sports massage help with sciatica, the answer is yes.
The information below covers the causes of sciatica, the effects of sports massage therapy on the sciatic nerve, and scheduling a massage with us.
What Causes Sciatica?
The sciatic nerve is actually a bundle of nerves. These nerves run from your lower back and into your thighs.
There are several sciatica symptoms:
- Lower back or hip pain
- Pain in the trunk of your body that gets worse while sitting
- Tingling or burning in the leg
- Constant pain on one side of the body between the lower back and thigh
- Shooting pain that makes standing up difficult
The causes of sciatic are just as many:
- Degenerative disc disease
- Lumbar spinal stenosis
- Spondylolisthesis (a spinal condition where vertebrae can slip over one another)
- Muscle spasms in the body’s trunk
While being overweight, wearing heels, and sleeping on an uncomfortable mattress don’t cause sciatica, they can make back pain worse.
The Effects of Sports Massage Therapy on Sciatic Nerve
When your massage therapist works on your sciatica, they don’t only work on the nerves. They also work on the whole surrounding area to get the best results.
The massage techniques your therapist uses will help with the following:
Tight muscles in your lower back and core can put pressure on your sciatic nerve. Tight muscles can also result in small, painful adhesions (often referred to as knots) which causes trigger point pain, causing more stress to the area.
Massage helps to loosen the muscles and knots, bringing relief to the area.
Massage stimulates certain receptors in the brain. When these receptors are excited, the brain releases the feel-good endorphins.
At the same time, these receptors tell the brain to release endorphins, they’re also telling the body to reduce its level of cortisol. Cortisol elevates stress hormones in the body, and when it comes down, so does your stress. As your stress falls, relief and relaxation come, lessening the body’s perception of pain.
What Does the Massage Treatment Plan Look Like?
At the beginning of your treatment, your massage therapist will assess the area where you feel the most pain.
Because the massage treatment for sciatica is meant to target a specific issue, it’s going to be more intense than a relaxation massage. You may feel some discomfort during the session, but if it becomes painful, make sure to communicate that to your therapist so they can adjust the pressure.
The relief generally comes after the massage. To experience the best results, we recommend scheduling regular sessions. Your therapist may not be able to get through every layer of muscle during the first massage, so once every week or every other week is suggested.
Scheduling with MG Sports Massage
If you’re in the Greater Cleveland area and want a different way to treat your sciatica pain, MG Sports Massage can help. We offer a setting that allows you to customize the atmosphere of your massage session so you can be as comfortable as possible. We want to help you feel your best and perform your best.