Vigorous exercise causes tiny tears in muscle fibers, leading to an immune reaction — inflammation — as the body gets to work repairing the injured cells. So the researchers screened the tissue from the massaged and unmassaged legs to compare their repair processes and find out what difference massage would make.
Studies of massage for cancer patients suggest massage can decrease stress, anxiety, depression, pain, and fatigue. Many health care professionals recognize massage as a useful, noninvasive addition to standard medical treatment. Therapeutic massage is most often given by trained massage therapists. Caregivers can also be trained in safe massage techniques.