Sports Massage

As an avid tennis player, football fan, and a massage therapist, I asked to be a guest writer on the is blog.
Sports are addicting, and in a sense an act of daily meditation and positivity, and mood raising. 
 
Many studies have demonstrated that serum concentrations of endogenous opioids, in particular beta-endorphin and beta-lipotrophin, increase in response to both acute exercise and training programs.
 
This being said exercise enthusiasts, athletes, novice and professionals experience more than just the need to win a game. 
 
When you are in the heat of a sport, especially if competing, you push your mind and your body to obtain the results that you are after. Being the mind is so powerful, we are able to endure constant muscle contraction, ongoing physical stress and conditioning. 
 
This is a part of being an athlete and playing sports. I am not only an avid tennis fan, but also regularly play the game and engage in local matches. I understand the stress and fatigue that the body is put through, and the rewards that come from the love of what you do.
 
As a massage therapist and bodyworker, I also understand the importance of recovery for both the physical body, and the mind. Massage therapy and body work offer a slue of benefits that will improve your art. There are several styles to choose from, depending on each individuals body, injuries, and needs. 
 
I highly recommend speaking with your therapist and working with them to discover the best solution for you. One thing to keep in mind is regular stretching, bodywork and massage. This will act as maintenance and preventative maintenance to help keep the body operating at peak performance, and to prevent any further damage that could alter or impact performance.
 
There are a few specific massage styles that I recommend for athletes.
 
Myofascial Release – There is a connective tissue that surrounds all muscles. This tissue can create restrictions in the muscles. Inflammation, injuries, and physical trauma can tighten this tissues, creating pain and physical restrictions. By releasing this tissue, the muscles become less restricted and range of motion is improved.
 
Deep Tissue Massage – A very common type of massage for both athletes and non athletes, deep tissue therapy works at both deep and superficial levels to release the entire muscle. This is a very “deep” massage and can be uncomfortable. It helps alleviate recent injuries and muscle tightness.
 
Active Release Technique – This type of massage is preferably to treat specific injuries and utilizes movement along with massage. It is great for scar tissue build up due to injuries that have built up overtime.
 
Athletes are dedicated to their sport. It takes ongoing training and physical endurance to play the game…just remember to take of your body!
 
K. Omega- Certified Massage Therapist – Sanctuary Spa

NFL Preseason 2017

Football is back and for many Americans life can finally go on. The wait is over and the pre season has not disappointed. With week 3 right around the corner, many teams might see some of their seasons starters play at full throttle and get a taste of what this season has in store.

So what’s gone on so far…

Well here is a look at the schedule and some upcoming games in week 3 & 4.

2017-nfl-preseason

So far the season has been as expected with coaches testing out some new recruits and getting teammates comfortable on the field together. Over all it looks like everyone is excited to get out on the field and knock some helmets.

It wouldn’t be the presason without some dissapointing injuries.

Odell Beckham Jr. involved in scary hit and courted off the field.

Additonally, the Browns gave us something to talk about with a large group of its players taking a knee during the national anthem, similar to Colin Kaepernick.

But not to derail from the actual game, here is a recap of what went down in week 2.

Eagles 20, Bills 16
Ravens 31, Dolphins 7
Buccaneers 12, Jaguars 8
Seahawks 20, Vikings 13
Titans 34, Panthers 27
Chiefs 30,  Bengals 12
Cowboys 24, Colts 19
Lions 16, Jets 6
Packers 21, Redskins 17
Texans 27, Patriots 23
Broncos 33, 49ers 14
Rams 24, Raiders 21
Bears 24, Cardinals 23
Steelers 17, Falcons 13
Saints 13, Chargers 7

Grand Slam Blooper

 

We all can appreciate sports, the highlights of the games played, stats, and the combadiere that goes along with them.  However it is always great to get a good laugh in when it comes to sports and the bloopers that sometimes happen.  I thought I’d start this week out with some good old fashion laughs and a great story too.

Last weekend I was visiting a college buddy and his family in Dallas, Texas.  Being that it we are almost in official baseball season we thought it would be fun to take his two sons to a spring training game.  John, my college buddy, has an older son who is 13 and a younger son who is 9.  The 9 year old Alex was beyond excited to go to this game.  He loved everything about it and was just ecstatic about the whole experience.  I ended up buying him a glove and baseball just because of his genuine excitement for the game and because I could tell we had a new sports junkie in the making.  Alex was determined to become a professional baseball player he told as as we were leaving the field.  When we got back to John’s house he wanted to go right in the yard and play some baseball.  John who wanted to show off in front of his sons and perhaps get the older one Tom more in the game took the bat and proceeded to give a quick lesson on how to really hit a baseball.  Well that he did! The ball went sailing through the air crashing into the upstairs window of his neighbors house shattering it!! Both boys and myself stared in awe and disbelief as we watched the glass explode.  John on the other hand was morbidly embarrassed not only because of the neighbors but also so much for his big talk!  

The neighbors were pretty cool about the situation and just asked that it was fixed and soon.  Thankfully John had a friend at mydallaswindows.com that could come out immediately to fix the mess.  While he stewed about the issue and kept apologizing to his neighbors his boys and I couldn’t help but laugh. It was a funny ending to a great day.  We also had to commend John on his stellar batting skills and told him that he might get offered a professional baseball contract someday

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How Safe Is Football…

Head Injuries!  This topic is perhaps one of the most talked about things in all of sports over the last couple of years.  With movies being made depicting what head injuries can do to football players, new scientific research being done and brought to life, the one question a lot of people are asking is, Whats is going to happen to the sport?  

We all know that football takes the lead when it comes to most beloved sport.  It is America’s sport of choice. And while basketball is popular as well, it holds no water against football.  With new scientific research finding that a 10 year football career will undoubtedly lead to the deterioration of brain function causing multiple horrifying side effects, as well as massive trauma to the brain, there is no doubt that there will be enormous effects on the sport.  Staring from who will actually still pursue a football career as well as what will happen to the players that do and the liability clause in their contracts?  After all this is only the beginning of the long road to investigating and really finding out the traumatic effects this game can have on the brain.  With many experts locked in controversy and indecision as to agree on just what dangers the players face when signing up to endure the rough contact they are prone to.  As well as the research being conducted we have the cases where players committed suicide leaving notes saying that they didn’t think right and that they were always in pain.  The loved ones of those deceased players want answers and to better understand this darkness that consumed the person they loved and cared about.

Already parents are thinking twice about letting their children play the sport in the community leagues as well as in school sports.  With the decline already being seen in the younger years doesn’t that go to show that the football stars that may have been bred are now headed down a different road player a safer sport with less contact?  What will be the fate of all football in general?  Will Basketball finally take the lead in the most watched sport in America?  Only time will tell as well as the research conducted and the findings in this research.

For now one thing is for certain, we need to find some answers and in the process of doing so protect those playing this sport as much as possible.  While we all love to watch a good football game and we enjoy the competitiveness of the game and the thrill of watching our favorite team win, the people out on the field deserve to live long healthy lives.  They have families and children and the pleasure in this game should not overrule the safety and health of these individuals.

 

Let’s Talk About Kaepernick….

Let’s talk about the silence surrounding Colin Kaepernick’s free agency!  It seems that while most of the top NFL players have been swooped up and signed left and right, merely 72 hours after the free agency started, the former 49er Quarterback has yet to receive any offers. If he has it has been silently behind closed doors with virtually no leaks to any media sources. Kaepernick who has been possibly the most talked about NFL player in all of 2016 now seems to be the only top NFL player that no one seems to want to talk to.  While he did lead the 49ers to the Super Bowl he is probably better known for his controversial choice to not stand during the National Anthem.  However while many players followed his lead and kneeled as well, those players don’t seem to have any repercussions with being chosen for well known teams.  Perhaps maybe there is some lack of interest on coaches parts due to his stance or rather lack thereof against the National Anthem, maybe more has to do with his on field presence.  We know that he was once the hot pick of the NFL and that he was also thought to be maybe one of  the next up and coming greatest professional football players out there. Times seem to have changed though in his lack of energy out on the field and have shown through making him the 30th among NFL passers.  Quite a fall from the top rankings he once held.

 

 Is there anyone showing any interest in him?   It is rumored that the Broncos were in talks about possibly drafting him, but nothing has seem to come to fruition in last updates regarding the free agency picks.  We also know that the Texans, Browns and the Jets are all looking for possible Quarterbacks but again nothing has come to the media’s attention that any of those teams are even possibly interested.  So now we wait to see the fate of this once celebrated NFL player.  Who was once the first choice or coveted player for many teams.  Can he build himself back up to the star status he once held? Or are we holding our breath to see if he can even make it to the training camp for teams like the Texans!?  Only time will tell.

Spring Training Is Here!

It is the beginning of baseball season as we know it.  With the Chicago Cubs winning the series last year after 107 years, I think it is safe to say that baseball has an added enthusiasm to it this year!  I’m getting ahead of myself though because spring training has only really just begun.  Living here in Phoenix, Arizona we have a whole different appreciation for spring training and it’s games.  Home to the Diamondbacks, the Cubs training facility and the Angels as well many of us enjoy multiple spring training events.  After all it is our little window of beautiful weather we can enjoy after making it through winter and before we scorch outside in the 120+ degree heat here known as summer!

The great thing about Spring training games is that practically anyone can enjoy them.  Take the whole family, go with friends whomever you choose.  One thing is for certain though you will have a day filled with sunshine and a great time.

This year a friend of mine that happens to be a coach for the Diamondbacks asked me if I knew anyone that could create signs for his training facility.  The company his team had been using for many years finally closed it’s doors and went into retirement.  He needed someone that could fill the last sign company’s shoes and fill them good.  They needed a huge sign pasted on one of the stadiums exterior walls!  I racked my brain for a few minutes and realized I knew some of the best sign guys in the industry!  Colorado Signs out of Denver had been in business for awhile and were a specialty sign company!  They even wrapped transit systems like the Light Rail trains!!

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Mad for March

‘March Madness’…What other college sporting season event has a moniker like that? One that is so wildly recognizable by fans and non-fans alike as the premiere college basketball competition? One that has millions of men and women of all ages glued to their TV’s or mobile devices for three weeks, often missing work, postponing family commitments? Many of these followers are people that never watch a professional basketball game and they didn’t attend any of the colleges playing… Yet they are hooked. As popular as college football may be, there is no comparison. Wallethub estimates that the loss of corporate productivity will amount to approximately $1.9 billion because of this hoops obsession! What is it ‘madness’, and why do so many people revel in it?

Let’s start with the basics. The first men’s NCAA basketball tournament was kicked off March 17th 1939. In that original tournament there were only 8 teams, and Ohio State claimed the 1st victory 10 days later. Fast forward to 2017 and there are 68 teams in the tournament, a fairly elaborate selection process to get those coveted spots, and the tournament will last 3 weeks this year. Lastly, the actual phrase ‘March Madness’ was 1st coined in 1982 by sportscaster Brent Musberger during his telecast.

So, what drives this fervor? Well there is the gambling of course…It is reported that 10% of the US population will feed the Las Vegas coffers about $100 million, second only to the Super Bowl for wagering on a sporting event. Of course that doesn’t even include the thousands of office or neighborhood pools that spring up during the tournament. But is that really what drives this obsession with college ball? I think not. Most folks are not wagering enough to get rich, or enough to get into big financial trouble. It certainly can add to the excitement, but it is not the cause of the excitement in most cases. These wagers on the line are not what is driving everyone to watch the games, and the highlights, and then chat for hours at the watercooler.  Most just folks want to part of ‘IT’-the greatest show on hardwood.

So, what makes ‘IT’ ‘it’?

Well, the pace is frantic for a start! Many games are compressed into a relatively short period of time. Brackets open, close, teams in or out in the blink of an eye. And the games themselves, often very unpredictable – top seeds are eliminated early and an underdog is rising! How will this all end! This certainly appeals to a society that thrives on fast paced and constantly updating information.

But yet, there is more below the excitement…

There is the spirit, the young talent and the unadulterated love of the game that shines from the players. There is the hope and opportunity for every player to make their mark on the world stage. The players are certainly talented but they’re not professionals, they’re not seasoned and they are not jaded by ongoing contract negotiations and deals. They put everything out on the court with passion and sometimes make mistakes. There’s no million dollar contracts on the line, but there is the opportunity to be that small-town hero on a big stage. There is that chance to be the player everyone is talking about at the water cooler the next day. Perhaps only the Olympics showcases the amateur athlete in the same way. Work hard at a sport you love, and then play your heart out.

Enjoy the madness while it lasts everyone!

Get Your Game Right

Man it feels good to have college football back in full swing. It feels like a piece of me was missing during the off season, and is now replaced making me whole again. Sorry to be dramatic, but seriously. I take game season seriously, especially when my team (Arizona State) is having a good season. ASU is technically having a building year, with their freshman receiver and new starting quarterback, but with a win over Cal last week, that means this can be a big season for Sun Devil fans.

This week is even bigger with ASU taking on the USC trojans. If ASU is able to pull a win over on the Trojans then it is game on for the Sun Devils, and we can realistically talk about a potential Pac 12 Championship appearance. So as any real fan should, I’m having a massive screening of the game in my backyard, projector screen and all. Shout out to takeoneeventrentals.com who is supplying the equipment for the event, and to everyone who is going to make it out this Saturday because it’s about to go down. I’m expecting over 200 people to be there, and hopefully more, because we need all the support we can get for our Sun Devils.

Trojans are on a huge loosing spree this season, after taking on last years national champions in the season opener. Since then they have also lost to Stanford and Utah making them 1-3 on the season. This is a historical low point for USC so you can imagine they are going to be looking to smear ASU. Arizona State on the other hand is looking to maintain their winning streak this season and leave the Southern California area with a 5-0 record.

This will be huge momentum for ASU and can help solidify them as a contender in the Pac 12 division. So anyone who is an ASU fan get your forks up, and get your game right this Saturday, kick off is at 6:00pm.

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Thank God for College Football

Well if you haven’t noticed college football is back and in full stride. I don’t know about you but a piece of me has been missing without being able to watch my favorite college teams take the stage every weekend. Also this season has been nothing short of magnificent and has only made me realize how much I was missing with out it. It’s only week three and we have already seen some of the biggest teams take the field against one another. Opening week the defending Champs in Alabama took the field against a hungry USC team to kick the season off. Speculations were circulating around Alabama and how well they would play with almost an entirely new offensive line, but they didn’t disappoint, and quickly put the boys at USC in place. Other than a great opening drive the USC offensive was ineffective against the Alabama defense. I’m sure this was a blow to the ego of the USC hopefuls, but they still have a lot of games to play this season. However they stacked their schedule heavy at the beginning of the year and faced another tough opponent yesterday, their pac 12 rival Stanford. Stanford the defending Pac 12 champs have another hopeful season ahead of them with the unstoppable #5, Christian McCaffrey. Stanford took an early lead, and controlled the game effectively all the way to the end. The Pac 12 had another big game yesterday with the Oregon ducks taking on the Nebraska Huskers. Oregon picked as the favorite, were not able to outshine the running game of the Huskers and lost 32 -35. It’s been tough for the Pac 12 so far this season, but we will see how they shape up for the rest of the season.

The most anticipated game this weekend was #2 Florida taking on #10 Louisville. This was the first top ten match up we have seen this year, and it was quite the spectacle. The Louisville Cardinals led by their ridiculously talented quarterback Lamar Jackson out scored Florida 63-20. Florida State could not shut down the run game, passing, nor the sheer speed of Jackson. Louisville has officially made their playoff bid, and now we will see if they can hold it.

Other notable games: 

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copa-america

Copa America

In case you missed it, Copa America (Centennial Cup America) took place this month and had soccer fans going crazy. Perhaps soccer is not your thing, but there was definitely some action that any sports fan can appreciate. This year the tournament was hosted in the United States, and fortunately for local fans the U.S. team really delivered. Coming in a very respectable 4th place, right behind Colombia, Argentina, and Chile who took the championship for the second year in a row. Huge disappointment for Argentina and their star Lionel Messi who has lost twice to Chile in the Copa finals. For the fans though Copa America was a thrilling tournament, and had no shortage of action.

Personally soccer has not been my favorite sport growing up, I think I was traumatized because of an incident as a child where my teammate got sick from pesticides on the field. In fact I told my mom I no longer wanted to play soccer after that season, perhaps a little paranoid, but it seriously freaked me out. The field had just been sprayed before our game, and one of my teammates had a really bad allergic reaction that eventually led to him leaving the game, and going to the hospital. I think these types of incidences are rare but they certainly do happen, and not just on soccer fields, but on any field that has grass because they’re usually treated by some type of pest control. Unfortunately the city and the youth sport organizations are not making a lot of money, so they aren’t getting the best pest control companies to service the fields.

I believe however safe and organic pest control will become a lot more prevalent on youth fields in the years to come. Parents and officials will undoubtedly react if they believe that current pesticides are unsafe, especially considering the age of the kids who are coming into contact with with these pesticides. And the reality is there has been growing exposure to the dangers of certain pesticides, and their link to serious diseases. I don’t write this to deter parents from letting their kids play youth sports because I believe sports are great for childhood development, but urge them to consult with their local youth sport associations and the fields property management about what’s being used. I think these property managers should try and locate a local organic pest control company in their area, or some one who offers pest control products that are safe for children to be around. There is already serious concern with the amount of chemicals children are exposed to on a regular basis, and it’s important as parents you do as much as possible to mitigate these exposures.

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Game 7 (Making History)

Well the Cleveland Cavaliers certainly made a comeback from their initial 3-1 deficit and made all the non believers think twice before they criticized the capabilities of Lebron James. Lebron and the Cleveland Cavaliers made history in more than one way last night, giving the Cavs their first Championship, giving Cleveland one of its only professional sport titles in more than half a century, and being the first team in NBA history to win after a 3-1 deficit in the NBA finals. Not to mentions the Cavs defeated the Golden State Warriors at home in the most winning stadium in the league against the current NBA champions. Nike is going to be able to make one hell of a commercial about Lebron James and the Cavs. Oh wait…they already did.

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