Massage for Tendonitis
Tendonitis is the painful inflammation of a tendon (fibrous tissue that connects muscle to bone) that often occurs as the result of a repetitive strain or a muscular overuse injury. Massage is a type of manual therapy that can help relieve the pain associated with tendinitis and improve overall function by manipulating the affected area to reduce excessive tension in the connective tissue and muscles, and promote healing.
How Can Massage Help Relieve Tendonitis?
Treatments for tendonitis are intended to heal the injured tendon. Restricted activity, rest, anti-inflammatory medications, elevation, compression, and splinting are the first lines of treatment for tendonitis. Massage for tendonitis may help relieve excessive tension and help prevent the buildup of scar tissue with hands on manipulation of the affected area. Icing may be done before and after massage to provide pain relief.
Massage should not be given during the acute stage of a tendonitis injury (which is typically the first 48 hours after injury) and should not be performed when tissues are swollen or visibly inflamed.
Studies have suggested that deep friction massage is the type of massage that is most beneficial for treating tendonitis. The goal of deep friction massage is to move across a ligament or tendon to mobilize it as much as possible. Deep friction massage, when performed before active exercise, can help reduce the pain associated with tendonitis and restore mobility. Deep friction massage is generally thought to be very effective for the treatment of tendonitis.
What is Tendonitis?
Tendonitis is the pain and tenderness that occur just outside of a joint as the result of inflammation or irritation of a tendon. Tendonitis commonly affects the shoulder (rotator cuff tendonitis), elbow (tennis elbow or golfer’s elbow), wrist and thumb (de Quervain’s disease), hip (iliotibial band tendonitis), knee (runner’s knee or peripatellar tendonitis), and lower calf or ankle (Achilles tendonitis). People with a chronic medical condition such as diabetes may have calcific tendonitis, a buildup of calcium deposits in the joint.
Acute (sudden onset) tendonitis may lead to chronic (long-term) tendonitis (called tendonosis or tendinopathy) if the person does not adequately rest the joint or if the person keeps using the joint while experiencing symptoms.
What Causes Tendonitis?
Repetitive strain injury is the most common cause of tendonitis and may occur more commonly with certain occupations or sports (such as baseball, golf or tennis). It may also be associated with an inflammatory condition, such as rheumatoid arthritis, or may occur as the result of an acute injury, such as an excessive muscle stretch.
How Can Tendonitis be Prevented?
Stretching before and after an activity, cross-training, and avoiding activities that cause excessive stress on the tendons for long periods can help prevent or reduce the risk of tendonitis. Physical therapy that includes range-of-motion exercises as well as flexibility and strengthening exercises also may help reduce the risk of recurring tendonitis.
We at Body Sage Massage have certified orthopedic massage therapists that are experienced, licensed massage therapist who can assess your condition and recommend the massage techniques that are right for you.