Activities that can increase the risk of muscle strain include athletic activity – where sudden acceleration or deceleration occurs, or while throwing, or with quick and/or heavy lifting, sudden coughing, or while performing irregular work tasks.
It is possible to strain any muscle where bone movement is involved. Commonly strained muscles include:
- the back and neck (lumbar, trapezius, and rhomboid muscles, neck)
- the leg (hamstring of the posterior thigh, adductor muscle, quadricep of the thigh, calf muscle),
- the arm (bicep, tricep),
- the upper body (abdominals, intercostals and oblique muscles of the chest).
The main symptoms of a muscle strain are pain and tenderness to the touch.
- If you have a grade-one (mild) muscle strain, the area may feel tender and you should still be able to move as per usual and continue your regular activities.
- If you have a grade-two muscle strain, the pain is likely to be more severe. You may also have a bruise and some swelling over the affected area. You’re likely to have lost some strength in the affected muscle, which means you’re unable to continue your usual activities.
- Severe pain caused by excessive strain means you have a grade-three strain and you may feel a popping sensation when the injury occurs. You may feel you’ve lost all strength in the affected muscle to the point where you’re unable to put any weight on it and cannot continue your usual activities.
Please note: all first appointments are minimum of R450.00 and take an hour including time to complete medical history and signature granting permission for treatments to be performed, which is required by Law.
If the appointment runs over this time you will be billed for extra time used @ R110 for 15 minutes.
The Swedish massage
Swedish massage is the common basis of sportsmassage that therapists are trained to perform on muscle injuries. The technique applies deeper pressure than other kind of massage and is known to increase oxygenation of the blood and release metabolic waste such as lactic and uric acids from the muscle tissue.
This can be particularly important for athletes who build up lactic acid in their muscles, because the massage can dislodge the build-up and replace it with fresh oxygenated blood.
Swedish massage technique can also assist in alleviating emotional stress and has other therapeutic uses.
The 5 main Swedish massage techniques were developed by Swedish doctor Per Henrik Ling, a physical therapist, developer, and teacher of medical gymnastics.
Long sweeping strokes that alternate between firm and light pressure and can be performed using the palm of the hand or the fingertips. The knots and tension in the muscles tend to get broken down with this technique.
Kneading strokes on the muscles of the body to attain deeper massage penetration. The thumbs and the knuckles of the fingers are used to knead the muscles and to squeeze them to prepare them for the further treatment.
- Tapotement or Rhythmic Tapping
Rhythmic tapping are strokes that use the fists of the cupped hands. This helps to loosen and relax the muscles being manipulated and also helps to energize them. The sides of the hands are also used.
These strokes create heat to bring about relaxation of the muscles. The palms of the hands are rubbed together vigorously and placed on the skin, or they are rubbed directly onto the skin of the patient. This technique can be used as a warm-up for preparing the relevant muscles of the body for deeper massage.
- Vibration or Shaking
Strokes loosen up the muscles through a back and forth action of the fingertips or the heel of the hand over the skin. The muscles of the body are literally shaken up to cause them to loosen and relax. The sides of the hand, and any part of the hand such as the tips or heel, can be used by the masseuse to shake up the muscles of the patient.