Professional cyclists are lucky to have a team soigneur. A soigneur is the person in their team who is in charge of food preparation, laundry, massage and other important tasks. Massage is really important for cyclists because it prepares them for a hectic and stressful activity and it also helps them cool down, recover and heal from the said activity. However, if you’re a cyclist and you don’t have a soigneur, it doesn’t mean that you can’t get a massage or perform a massage on yourself. Here are some massage tips that you can do on your own:
The first thing that you need to do is do a couple of warm up massage strokes. So you need to sit on a towel. Another option is to sit on the edge of a chair or a bed. Loosen the upper leg muscles by quickly stroking them in an up and down motion. It’s just like brushing crumbs off of your hands. Afterwhich, proceed to massaging your lower legs. This action will help loosen your calf, your hamstrings and your quadriceps. When you’re done, massage your other leg for one whole minute.
Then we also have the post-race rub. What is it? It’s actually done after your race or after you’re done cycling. The first thing that you need is massage oil. If you don’t have one, you may use a pinch of olive oil. Apply it on your upper thigh and using your fingers, slowly kneed your quadriceps and hamstrings. Do this from your knee up. Also, do this for at least a minute or 2. Once you’re done, reverse the direction of your strokes and this time, you should apply more pressure. Repeat the process on your other thigh.
The Right Time
When you massage your muscles, you have to time it right. Otherwise, you may end up sore and hurt. As you can see, deep massage has the ability to irritate nerve endings. In the process, it can leave people sore. So make sure that you don’t experience this by avoiding it before a big race. Also, to avoid gastrointestinal discomforts, you need to do this before mealtime.
Drink lots of water. Did you know that water just doesn’t hydrate us? Water is also capable of flushing out toxins from our muscles. So drink as much water as you can after a race.
So these are the things that you can do to prepare yourself for a cycling race.
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