The following thigh massage techniques form part of our thigh strain rehabilitation program. They are ideal for mid to late-stage treatment of thigh strains as well as general injury prevention.
The following is for information purposes. We always recommend seeking professional advice before attempting, and self-treatment.
Before beginning massage therapy your therapist will check for contraindications. If any apply to you then thigh massage is not suitable and may cause further injury.
When can apply thigh massage?
If you have not had a thigh muscle strain and are looking to use massage to help prevent injury then you can begin as soon as possible.
If you are recovering from an injury then thigh massage can begin after the acute stage has passed. However, use only very light, superficial pressure. Later, as your injury heals, techniques become gradually deeper.
Why is massage beneficial?
Massage helps break down any scar tissue that has formed. It also helps relax tight muscles and stimulate blood flow to the area. As a result, aids the healing process and may increase flexibility.
Light massage can be applied daily initially but later on, as the techniques become deeper, more recovery time between sessions may be required.
Thigh massage contraindications
Massage contraindications are injuries or conditions where massage is harmful or dangerous. The following may be relevant to thigh strains:
Open wounds – Any cuts, lacerations, or grazes. You should wait until the scar has properly formed which is usually between one and two weeks.
Muscle ruptures (acute stage) – In the acute stage, soft tissue may still be bleeding. Thigh massage increases bleeding and tissue damage which prolongs recovery. After the initial 48 to 72 hours, massage may be possible but it will depend on the extent of the injury.
Tendon ruptures – The above also applies to tendon injuries. Complete ruptures are contraindications for massage and need surgery, not massage.
Contusions – These are impact injuries causing bleeding within the muscle. Massage to a contusion too soon after the injury may cause further damage and may lead to Myositis Ossificans (bone growth within the muscle).
Burns, Chilblains and Broken bones – Massaging all of these will hurt and cause damage. Don’t do it.
Myositis Ossificans – A bad contusion or muscle rupture may begin to calcify (grow bone). Massage will make the damage worse.
Other conditions include:
- Periostitis – This is inflammation of the sheath that surrounds the bone.
- Rheumatoid arthritis and gout.
Thigh massage techniques
Massage begins with light stroking techniques called effleurage. This warms the area up and pumps blood through the muscles. Next, kneading techniques called petrissage manipulate and stretch the muscle tissue, not only lengthways, but also transversely.
Cross friction and circular friction involve applying deep pressure across a specific location. These thigh massage techniques are great for releasing muscle tension and helping to re-align scar tissue from a torn thigh muscle.
Trigger point techniques involve applying sustained deep pressure to a specific tight knot or lump in the muscle. As the muscle tissue releases, your therapist will increase pressure. Ideal for eliminating trigger points in muscles.