Thanks to a tip from professional trainer Larry Starr, here are some highlights from an article from NPR entitled, “Massage Eases Inflammation In Worn-Out Muscles” …
“Scientists now say that massage reduces inflammation caused by exercise, making a rubdown nature’s answer to Advil.
Now, it’s true the study involved only 11 men. But the scientists didn’t just ask the volunteers how they felt. The stuck needles in the volunteers’ legs to biopsy their quadriceps muscles.
The men exercised hard, riding a stationary bike until they could ride no more. After that, one leg got a 10-minute massage. The researchers compared muscle cells from the two legs at a very deep level.
They found that the massaged muscles produced fewer cytokines, proteins that can cause swelling and soreness. Those lucky muscles also made more new mitochondria, which produce energy in the body’s cells.
But for now, it’s probably enough to know that we weekend athletes can help stave off soreness with the pleasure of a massage.
No Impact On Lactic Acid
Interestingly, the researchers found that massage had no effect at all on the amount of lactic acid in muscles. Lactic acid is a byproduct of exertion, and is widely thought by us civilians to cause muscle soreness.”