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Decreasing Post-Exertion Muscle Soreness For Soccer Players
Muscle soreness following a vigorous soccer workout is sometimes managed by stretching, practicing yoga, soaking in a hot bath or a SPORTS MASSAGE by our team here at BodyMED.
A sports massage is more vigorous and goal-oriented when compared to traditional relaxation massages; the goal is to prepare, treat and maintain the muscles. It is geared toward athletes, but anyone who is athletic or fit may also benefit from this. Sports massage can be broken down into 3 main groups:
Pre-Event – Quick, energetic techniques are used to enhance an athlete’s warm-up. Pre-event massages will increase circulation, stimulate the muscles and increase flexibility and range of motion. All of which reduces muscle pain and soreness and preps the athlete for their performance.
Post-event – A more calming technique is used to aid muscles in returning to their natural state. Circulation is increased to aid in elimination of toxins to prevent muscle soreness, fatigue and spasms.
Maintenance – Maintenance massages use different techniques to aid an athlete throughout their training; myofascial release, neuromuscular therapy, and PNF stretching all help to keep an athlete in top shape.
YOGA FOR HOCKEY – As many athletes are starting to build their off season training plan, try adding a few of these simple yoga postures to your regular routine or cool-down. These asanas are intended to promote strength, flexibility and breath control, to make getting the puck down the ice a breeze. Hold each pose for five full breathes to build strength, flexibility and focus.
Fifteen years ago, I was not acting my age. Since I would recoil from any form of exercise, as well as any green foods, I was overweight, inflexible … and debilitated by back pain. The 40 extra pounds on my frame — plus tight, shortened back muscles and weak abs — left me moving like an 80-year-old version of myself.
I suffered daily from sciatica, back spasms, limited mobility, weakness, you name it. When I got stuck in my car one day, unable to swing my legs out of the car because of my sciatic pain, at age 23, I realized, “Something’s gotta change.” I started reading up and realized a shocking number of people suffer with chronic back pain, partly from hours of sitting in a way that flattens the low back curve.
Then, I found yoga. Over time, using some of the same poses I’m showing you here, I built a lean and pain-free body.
With just a few moves, you can bring your legs, hips and spine into proper alignment, release tension and gain supportive strength. These asanas provide traction for your spinal muscles as you root through the hips and let a gentle pull or gravity make space between the spinal bones. You’ll walk taller and enjoy a body that’s no longer stopping you, but rather serving you to live, move and play to the fullest.
Testosterone boosting foods can really maximize your dietary efforts and give you the edge you need during training camp.
1) Oysters: Protein, magnesium, lots of zinc
Along with increasing your physical endurance, oysters pack more zinc than almost any other food source just six gives you almost seven times the RDA and zinc plays a key role in muscle growth and testosterone levels.
Eat a serving of oysters once a week, raw, cooked or canned but never fried.
2) Lean Meat: Protein, iron, magnesium, zinc, saturated fat
Few things have as positive an impact on testosterone levels as lean meats. Beef specifically offers the added benefit of high protein and zinc two nutrients key to optimizing testosterone and muscle-building potential in one source. And while you don’t want too much saturated fat in your diet, you require some to produce testosterone.
Grill or broil a lean cut of steak a few times a week. I love Top Sirloin!
3) Rajma (Kidney Beans): Protein, fiber, zinc
Beans are indeed the magical fruit. Beans pack a bigger shot of zinc than any other member of the veggie family; some (like baked beans) even rival the zinc content of red meat. Add that to a food that’s high in protein and fiber and low in fat, and you have winning combos.
Baked beans, lima beans, navy beans and kidney beans are all good choices. Canned versions are as nutritious as dry!
4) Chicken: Protein and little fat
High-protein diets have a positive impact on muscle mass and thus testosterone levels and high fat seems to have the opposite effect. So while chicken and turkey lack high zinc levels, their protein-to-fat ratios make them important to your diet.
Roast or grill skinless, boneless portions of chicken several times a week.
5) Eggs: Protein and cholesterol
Testosterone is synthesized from cholesterol, and as such, food containing cholesterol is a good source of building blocks for testosterone. Eggs are a source of pure, unadulterated cholesterol, and one recent study showed that the excess cholesterol in eggs isn’t as harmful as previously thought. So stock up on whole eggs (unless otherwise instructed by your physician). Or use the liquid egg whites!
Start your day with 3-4 whole eggs cooked in olive oil or fat-free cooking spray. The amount of eggs you eat also depends on your goals, body weight etc.
6) Cottage Cheese: 1% Milk Fat) Protein with very little fat
One cup of 1% cottage cheese has more protein and less fat than a serving of lean meat or chicken. Have it as a snack or with a meal for testosterone-boosting potential.
Eat 1 cup of cottage cheese each day
7) Broccoli: Indole-3-carbinol, fiber
Elevated estrogen levels lead to fat accumulation and can interfere with muscle growth. In a clinical study, indole-3-carbinol cut the largely female hormone estradiol in half for men. Broccoli contains high levels of indoles, food compounds that help reduce bad estrogen.
Eat as many servings of broccoli as you can stomach.
8) Cabbage: Indole-3-carbinol, fiber
In addition to exhibiting the same estradiol-restricting properties as other cruciferous vegetables, cabbage is high in fiber. Fiber is great for controlling weight, as it prevents the consumption of fattier foods. Keeping weight down has an anti-estrogen impact.
Load up that fat-free brat with sauerkraut and have a side of slaw just go easy on the mayo.
9) Dates (Khajur)
Dates are even beneficial for increasing sexual stamina in the human body. A handful of dates, when soaked in fresh goat’s milk for the night and then grinded in the same milk with the mixture of cardamom powder and honey, becomes a very useful tonic for increasing sex endurance and sterility caused due to functional disorders.
Handful of Khajur in the morning.
10) Garlic: Allicin
In clinical studies, garlic’s active ingredient enhances testosterone levels and inhibits cortisol, a hormone that competes with testosterone, limiting its actions and breaking down muscle tissue.
Season other foods with garlic when you can, but eating whole cloves provides the most direct benefit.
Knowing the signs of a concussion is important for everyone regardless of whether or not they are involved in contact sports. Accidents can happen in any sport or setting, so knowing the signs and symptoms is extremely important.
We can thank Sidney Crosby and many other professional athletes for raising awareness about the dangers of concussions in sports, but concussions aren’t just limited to athletes. All it takes is a fall or even a seemingly harmless bump of the head to cause a concussion and the results prove catastrophic.
What are muscle strains?
Muscle strains are common workplace and sports injuries affecting the muscles or its tendons. Strains occur when your muscle is excessively stretched beyond its limit or torn causing pain and inflammation. If your tendon is injured, it is medically known as tendonitis / tendinitis.
Causes of muscle strains
Muscle strains occur because of an overstretching/overuse injury or sudden movements such as throwing (pitching), sprinting, or jumping. Increasing the weight, duration, or intensity of your workout too fast and too soon may lead to injury of your muscles.
Severity of muscle strain / Grades
Muscle strains have different severities and can be grade I, II, or III.
Grade I strain, also called mild muscle strain, is overstretching of the muscle with or without minimal muscle tearing.
Grade II strain, the muscle is overstretched with tearing of muscle tissues. The tear, however, is incomplete. A grade II strain is also called a moderate strain.
Grade III (severe) strain is the most painful. It occurs when most of the muscle fibers or the entire muscle is torn.
The symptoms that you experience depend on the severity of your injury. The most common symptoms are pain and swelling at the site of injury. Other symptoms may include
- Difficulty moving / pain that worsens with movement
- Muscle spasm
- Muscle weakness
- A “popping” sensation at the time of injury
- Uneven muscle (deformity) compared to the other (severe tearing)
If you experience severe pain and swelling or are unsure of the severity of your injury, don’t hesitate to consult your health care provider.
Minor muscle strains can be successfully treated with rest, ice application, compression and elevation. This is called RICE therapy.
Rest. Try to avoid movements that make your symptoms worse. You may have to modify your activities for a while.
Ice. Apply an ice pack while resting to help minimize your pain and swelling. Wrap the pack with towel and apply for 20 minutes at a time every 3 to 4 hours a day. Continue doing this for the first two to three days following your injury or until your symptoms of pain and swelling have cleared up.
Compression. Loosely wrap a compression bandage or an Ace wrap on your injured limb to help control your swelling. If you are unsure of how to do this, ask a trained professional such as a doctor or physiotherapist to teach you or do it for you.
Elevation. Elevate your injured limb above the level of your heart. Elevating your limb may help reduce or control your swelling.
Other treatment options
- Over the counter pain medications such as acetaminophen or ibuprofen
- Modified immobilization
- Modalities, such as TENS and ultrasound
- Range of motion exercises
- Stretching and strengthening exercises
- Work or sport-specific rehabilitation program
Yoga and sports is becoming an increasingly popular topic for many reasons. Traditional training methods primarily focus on the contraction of muscles. While this is essential for muscle growth and athletic development, it does not contribute to increasing range of motion, mobility, or flexibility. With very structured strength and conditioning programs and the need for ample practice, it is difficult to dedicate enough time to stretching and developing core strength. Keeping our bodies tuned for success keeps us motivated and wills us to stay consistent with our training. However, injuries can occur from overuse, lack of stretching, insufficient warm up, and decreased range of motion. Static stretching has been a staple during warm up for many years. However, its effectiveness has come into question and many athletes have found much more success in the integration of regular stretching exercises, such as Yoga. Even though this may seem like a new and unconventional form of training, Yoga has been practiced for more than 5000 years, but it is has only recently gained more popularity in the sports world.
Ryan Giggs talks about the influence that Yoga has had in his career. He credits Yoga for how well his body has been able to hold up the last 7 years. Without it, Giggs would be a retired footballer. 3 reasons why Yoga is important for Soccer.
Benefits of Yoga for Athletes:
1) Increase Core Strength Yoga poses are all about building core strength. The slow, focused movements require a strong mid-section and the isometric contractions of many exercises will add a new form of resistance training to your typical machine-based workouts. For any athlete, the core is the most important muscle to stay strong, it allows your upper body to move cohesively with your lower body. Your lower body can’t work properly with a weak core and vice versa, your upper body can’t function properly without a strong core. That’s why soccer players are known for their abs because it’s the sport where you need to utilize every part of your body, with yoga, your core strength will reach a new level of strength.
2) Increase Flexibility and Range of Motion Yoga routines incorporate slow, steady flexibility exercise that is ideal for athletes. Frequent yoga training will increase flexibility, and range of motion while relieving muscle tension. Whether you’re goalie or striker, improved range of motion will help improve performance. With an increase in flexibility and range of motion, your chances of getting injured decreases as mentioned by Giggs.
3) Improve Balance Yoga is a perfect way to incorporate balance exercises into your training routine. Balance exercises are often overlooked by athletes, but are one of the most effective ways to correct muscle imbalance or body mechanic problems. With most sports and weight training routines you tend to perform repetitive motions that develop some muscle groups while others are ignored. Yoga can fix these imbalances. Especially after an injury whether it be surgical or not, your body will develop some imbalances and yoga will help you level back out whatever imbalances you have.
If you can find a yoga class near you, I recommend doing it at least once a week.
BY RICH ROLL
MAY 14, 2012 8:40 PM EDT