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An arm massage focuses mainly on the muscles that make up the upper and lower regions of the arm. There are a range of different muscles that make up the arm. Muscles that make up the arm include; biceps, triceps, brachialis, brachioradialis, coracobrachialis and the extensor carpi radialis brevis. An arm massage aims to decrease tension and pain using a variety of different techniques. Our highly trained massage therapists at physio.co.uk use an arm massage to help treat pain, stress and muscles tightness.

What techniques are used in an arm massage?

There are a variety of techniques used during an arm massage. Common techniques used include:

Deep strokes are used during an arm massage. Deep strokes are where firm pressure is placed along the arm using flattened hands and fingers. Deep strokes aim to get deep into the muscle tissues to relieve muscles tightness and tension. Deep strokes help to increase the temperature of muscles by creating friction between the hands and skin. Deep strokes help to reduce restriction as muscle temperature increases. Reducing restriction increases muscle elasticity and flexibility therefore relieving tightness and tension.

Frictions are a common technique used during an arm massage. Frictions are performed using fingertips or thumbs. Fingertips or thumbs are used to apply pressure along muscle fibres. Frictions are a technique that increases muscle temperature to help break down collagen fibres that are built up in muscles. Collagen fibres cause pain due to being restrictive. When temperature is increased, collagen fibres loosen and increase in elasticity. An increase in elasticity reduces restriction and pain.

Kneading is a technique used during an arm massage. Kneading is performed on areas containing soft tissues. This technique uses pulling and squeezing actions to relieve tightness and increase cellular exchange. As muscles are pulled and squeezed during an arm massage, muscles loosen due to being stretched. Stretched muscles allow them to relax therefore reducing tightness. Cellular exchange is improved using kneading. Improving cellular exchange removes metabolic wastes and replaces them with oxygen and nutrients more efficiently. Cellular exchange decreases muscular fatigue and ache as waste products are removed. Due to an increase in oxygen and nutrients, muscles are able to strengthen and become healthier.

An arm massage is used for lymphatic drainage. Lymphatic drainage is where pressure is applied in an upwards direction along the muscles. Lymphatic drainage helps to remove metabolic wastes through glands and reduce any excess fluid. The lymphatic system is stimulated during lymphatic drainage. Metabolic wastes are removed through the lymphatic system, through the lymph flow. Stimulation of the lymph flow helps to remove metabolic wastes out of the body through glands. There are a variety of different glands in the body. The most known glands are sweat glands. Metabolic wastes are removed through a gland located within the armpit during an arm massage. An improvement in blood flow also occurs. An improvement in blood and lymph flow helps to reduce swelling or excess fluids. Swelling is a result of a build-up of fluids that help to protect an injury. A build-up of fluids is caused by a restriction of blood and lymph flow. Swelling can cause pain and become very discomforting to a person. A common cause of swelling is lymphedema. Lymphedema can be a result of infection or surgery. Infection or surgery can cause a restriction of lymph flow. Restricting lymph flow creates a build-up of metabolic wastes and fluids. Lymphatic drainage reduces the effects of lymphedema by increasing blood and lymph flow. Increasing blood and lymph flow helps to remove metabolic wastes and excess fluids and replace them with nutrients and oxygen essential for healing.

Customer reciving arm massage while in relaxed position in Manchester Physio Clinic

When can an arm massage help?

An arm massage can help in a variety of ways. The ways in which an arm massage can help include:

How does an arm massage help delayed onset muscle soreness?

An arm massage can help treat delayed onset muscle soreness. Delayed onset muscle soreness can start to affect a person's body up to 72 hours after exercise. Delayed onset muscle soreness is most commonly caused by incomplete cool down.

An arm massage aims to treat delayed onset muscle soreness by improving blood circulation, stimulating the lymphatic system and reducing swelling.

Blood circulation is improved during an arm massage as an increase in capillarisation and vasodilation occurs. Capillarisation is where more oxygen is available to be used by muscles due to an increase in capillaries being formed. Vasodilation is where an increase in blood flow is enabled as blood vessels widen. Improving blood circulation provides muscles with an increase in oxygen which are used as energy, and nutrients which are used to strengthen muscles. An increase in oxygen and nutrients reduces muscular fatigue and aids in maintaining healthy muscles.

The lymphatic system is stimulated during an arm massage. The lymphatic system consists of many vessels called lymph vessels. The lymphatic system helps remove waste products and toxins from within muscles. Waste products and toxins contribute towards muscular fatigue and slow down the healing process. Removing waste products and toxins, reduces fatigue and allows muscle to heal more quickly, therefore reducing pain.

During activity, muscles can become damaged due to overuse. Muscles become damaged when microscopic tears are formed. Microscopic tears create swelling as the body tries to protect the injured area. Swelling can restrict movement and can result in pain. An arm massage reduces swelling by encouraging the growth of new, undamaged blood vessels. An increase in blood vessels helps remove extra fluids that have built up around the injured area that have created swelling. Reducing swelling increases movement and reduces pain.

Customer reciving arm massage while in relaxed position

How does an arm massage help post event?

An arm massage is commonly used post event. After exercise or competition, muscle tend to be tense and potentially damaged. Metabolic wastes may also still be within muscles causing fatigue and muscular ache.

An arm massage helps to reduce the effects of exercise or competition by decreasing tension, loosening scar tissue and improving blood and lymph flow.

Tension is created as muscles contract and do not relax. An arm massage helps to loosen muscles by increasing temperature. Loosening muscles allows them to stretch and relax therefore reducing tension.

Scar tissue is formed to help repair damage. Scar tissue can be restrictive resulting in pain. As temperature increases during an arm massage, scar tissue loosens. When scar tissue is loosened, fibres are able to re align, reducing restriction. Reducing restriction therefore also reduces pain.

Blood and lymph flow are improved during an arm massage. Improving blood flow provides muscles with an increase in oxygen and nutrients which are used to provide muscles with energy and help them strengthen. Improving lymph flow helps remove metabolic wastes more efficiently. Metabolic wastes contribute towards muscular fatigue and ache. Removing waste products more efficiently means that muscles are less likely to fatigue and also helps keep them strong and healthy.

How does an arm massage help pre event?

An arm massage can help a person prepare for exercise or competition. A person can become both physically and mentally prepared through an arm massage.

An arm massage aims to prepare a person by increasing range of movement and increasing the level of positive hormones in the body.

Before exercise and competition, muscles tend to be tight and tense. Muscle tightness and tension causes restriction and could result in injury during activity if not removed. Injuries such as pulls, strains and tears are more likely to occur within short, powerful bursts of movements during activity when muscles are restricted. Reducing restriction decreases the chances of injury and also improves range of movement. During an arm massage, muscle temperature rises. A rise in muscle temperature allows muscles to loosen and increase in elasticity. Looser and more elastic muscles increases range of movement and decreases the chances of injury. Increasing range of movement therefore means restriction is reduced and a person is physically prepared for activity.

An arm massage also helps a person mentally prepare for activity. An arm massage helps a person mentally prepare by increasing the level of positive hormones in the body. Positive hormones called serotonin and dopamine are increased within the body. Serotonin and dopamine help a person to relax and focus, ready for activity. An increase in adrenaline can also occur. Adrenaline gets a person prepared by increasing energy levels ready for activity. Adrenaline increases as heart rate also increases. An increase in heart rate means more blood is being delivered to muscles to provide them with more energy. More energy means that muscles are less likely to fatigue during activity.

How does an arm massage help tight muscles?

An arm massage can help treat tight muscles. Muscle tightness can be caused for many reasons. The most common reasons of muscle tightness are overuse and injury. When muscles are overused or are injured, scar tissue forms around an area to repair damage. Scar tissue can become restrictive causing muscle tightness.

An arm massage aims to reduce muscle tightness by increasing muscle elasticity and flexibility and loosening scar tissue.

An arm massage encourages an increase in blood flow. An increase in blood flow increases the temperature of muscles. An increase in muscle temperature allows muscle to stretch and relax. Allowing muscles to stretch increases elasticity and flexibility and therefore reduces muscle tightness.

As well as an increase in muscle temperature, the temperature of scar tissue also increases. An increase in scar tissue temperature helps it to soften and loosen. Loosening scar tissue reduces restriction. A decrease in restriction allows muscles to move with no pain or discomfort therefore reducing muscle tightness.

What are the benefits of an arm massage?

There are a wide range of benefits of an arm massage. The benefits of an arm massage include:

How does an arm massage maximise performance?

An arm massage can maximise a person's performance during activity.

An arm massage aims to maximise performance by increasing blood flow and lymph flow and increasing positive hormones.

During an arm massage, blood flow is increased. An increase in blood flow occurs when capillarisation and vasodilation increases. Capillarisation is where there is an increase in capillaries that help provide more oxygen to the muscles. Vasodilation is where blood vessels widen and become closer to the skin surface. Widening blood vessels allows more blood to travel through them. Increasing blood flow provides the muscles with more oxygen to be used as energy during activity and more nutrients to keep them strong.

Lymph flow is also increased during an arm massage. An increase in lymph flow helps to remove waste products and toxins that could be contributing towards fatigue.

An increase in positive hormones is encouraged during an arm massage. Relaxation hormones called serotonin and dopamine are increased to help a person focus and relax. Adrenaline is also increased. Increasing adrenaline can make a person full of energy ready for activity. An increase in adrenaline also increases heart rate. Increasing heart rate means that blood is pumped around the body more quickly so more oxygen can be delivered to the muscles. More oxygen means more energy.

How does an arm massage increase range of movement?

Increased range of movement is a benefit gained through an arm massage. Range of movement becomes restricted due to a variety of reasons. The most common reasons of restricted range of movement include muscles tightness, injury and surgery.

An arm massage aims to increase range of movement by decreasing muscle tightness and reducing restriction.

During an arm massage, an increase in blood flow is encouraged. Increasing blood flow rises muscle temperature. A rise in muscle temperature allows them to stretch and relax therefore relieving tightness.

An increase in tissue temperature also occurs during an arm massage. Muscle tissue can become inelastic and inflexible causing restriction. Increasing the temperature of tissue allows elasticity and flexibility to be increased. Increasing elasticity and flexibility therefore reduces restriction. Decreasing muscle tightness and increasing tissue elasticity allows the muscles to move more freely, increasing range of movement.

How does an arm massage decrease pain?

An arm massage can decrease pain. The most common causes of pain include injury, poor posture and surgery. When damage has occurred in the body, receptors detect this and send a signal to the brain. The brain then sends a message to the nerves stimulating pain.

An arm massage aims to decrease pain by interrupting the signal sent to the brain so that the nerves do not register pain.

During an arm massage, new signals are sent to the brain. This signal is formed as a result of the friction created between the skin and fingers. Sending new signals to the brain, interrupts the other messages telling the brain that there is damage. Replacing the original signals sent to the brain therefore reduces pain as receptors no longer receive a message to create pain.

How does an arm massage prevent injury?

An arm massage can help prevent further injury.

An arm massage aims to prevent injury by improving blood and lymph flow and decreasing restriction.

Improving blood flow encourages more nutrients and oxygen to be delivered to the muscles. An increase in oxygen and nutrients provides them with more energy to be used during activity. Improving lymph flow helps remove metabolic wastes more efficiently so the muscles are less likely to fatigue. Improving blood and lymph flow both aid in the maintenance of stronger healthier muscles so will less likely become damaged during activity.

Restriction can be due to a variety of reasons, the most common being muscle tightness. During an arm massage, muscle temperature increases. Increasing muscle temperature allows tissues in muscles to become more elasticated and flexible. An increase in elasticity and flexibility increases the range of movement of the muscle, therefore reducing restriction. Reducing restriction allows the muscles to move more freely during short bursts of movement. Allowing the muscles to move more freely reduces the risks of injuries such as pulls, strains and tears.

Summary

An arm massage is focused on the muscles that make up the upper and lower half of the arm. A range of techniques including deep strokes, frictions, kneading and lymphatic drainage are used to help delayed onset muscle soreness, the effects of post event, to get a person prepared pre event and reduce muscle tightness. A person can gain many benefits through an arm massage including maximised performance, increased range of movement, decreased pain and prevention of injury. Massage therapists at Physio.co.uk use an arm massage to decrease pain and relieve muscle tightness and tension.

How can I arrange an Arm massage?

The easiest way to arrange an arm massage at Physio.co.uk is to email us at office@physio.co.uk or call us on 0800 033 7800.

Alternatively if you have any questions please feel free to contact us.

We offer a 7 day service and provide home and clinic appointments.




Call us on: 0330 088 7800
Phone: 0330 088 7800
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