Complementary Medicine: Physical Therapy and Massage Therapy

Kaleah McClain, LMT FMT NMRT.
10.6.2020

We often discuss imbalances within posture and structure with our clientele, and then usually we give you information for one of our trusted partners. As clients experience pain relief, they will ask, “So, how do I stop this from happening again?” As we are all unique with individual needs and complaints, there is no “one size fits all” answer. However, we do work very closely with other professionals who have helped us on our personal journeys to remain pain-free.

One such person is Jason and his company Vital 6. His work as a physical therapist is outstanding and comprehensive, and by no means “typical” of physical therapists. As he works to redefine what PT can mean for long-term pain relief and functional recovery, we assist those on that journey with massage therapy. What is the correlation between the two?

Physical therapy can be as strenuous as it is rewarding. One study analyzed the effect of massage prior to intense activity similar to physical therapy exercises. The notable differences were seen in mitigating inflammation after a physical therapy session and promoting mitochondrial biogenesis. Additionally, manual therapy is used to enhance functional movement and activate specific muscles which continues the work from the physical therapist.

As these fields are complementary, asking your physical therapist and massage therapist about their treatment plans and getting feedback from each can help assist you in receiving well-rounded care. Do not be hesitant to ask questions and be informed about your body! The goal of every professional is to see you achieve your goals for your everyday life by having access to the wellness professionals that work for you. If there is any therapy you haven’t tried and would like to, please reach out and see if we have a partner to recommend.

https://stm.sciencemag.org/content/4/119/119ra13

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