Chaos of Sports Massage
March 24, 2014 – 8:08 am | Comments Off on Chaos of Sports Massage

Check out my new blog post on Massage Magazine – The Chaos of Sports Massage
I’ve worked with athletes for over 25 years as either a massage therapist or athletic trainer and learned you not only …

Read the full story »

Anatomy and biomechanics relevant to sports massage

Sports Massage

Working with athletes or active clients


My personal reviews of products and services


Research articles regarding massage therapy and sports massage

Orthopedic Assessment

Tips for finding the root cause of the injury

Sports Massage »

Sports Hernia
February 13, 2013 – 12:05 pm | Comments Off on Sports Hernia

With the news of NFL running back Adrian Peterson undergoing surgery for a sports hernia, it is a good time to talk about this injury.

First, the term sports hernia is misleading, as it is not a true hernia. The clinical name is for this injury is “athletic pubalgia.” Unlike a hernia, which involves a weakening of an abdominal wall, a sports hernia is an injury to one of multiple soft tissue structures the pubic bone and does not necessarily result in a bulge over the inguinal ligament.

Sports Massage for Sports Hernia

(Modified From Original at Wikimedia Commons)

The injury is often caused by a hip extension with hip adduction and possible trunk rotation. The injury occurs because the rectus abdominis, external oblique, and adductor longus all attach at the pubic bone.  During an action involving both adductor and abdominal action, these three distinct forces pull in different directions (see image), causing tissue damage at the pubic bone.

An athlete with a sports hernia will complain of pain in the groin, often radiating down the adductor longus muscle.

There are two common assessments for a sports hernia. First, the therapist provides resistance to the athlete’s torso during a sit-up, resulting in increased pain at the pubic bone. Alternatively, the therapist may instruct the athlete to squeeze their knees together and apply resistance, also resulting in increased pain.

Unfortunately, this is a difficult injury to heal. Conservative treatment involves rest, ice, soft tissue massage, and gentle stretching to relieve tension in the area. Increasing core strength is also employed, as a strength imbalance between the core and leg muscles is thought to contribute to the risk of injury.

Massage therapy should focus on releasing tension in the adductor longus muscle, gentle friction at the attachment site at the pubic bone, and addressing any muscle imbalances at the hip.  Correcting anterior pelvic tilt may also be helpful, as this postural condition increases tension on the external oblique and rectus abdominis muscles.

If conservative treatment is unsuccessful, surgical treatment is often recommended, where they may insert a flexible mesh to strengthen the abdominal fascia and/or remove the ilioinguinal nerve. If the injury is to the adductor muscle, they will perform an adductor tendon release, where the adductor longus tendon is cut from it’s attachment on the pubic bone and attach it to the adductor brevis muscle underneath it. The surgeons I have heard present on this procedure stated they can have athletes back to competition in 6 weeks post-surgery.

For more information:

Tools For Touch Webinar
January 23, 2013 – 7:03 am | Comments Off on Tools For Touch Webinar
Tools For Touch Webinar

I am happy to announce I will be presenting “Sports Massage for the Weekend Warrior” as part of the
Tools for Touch Webinar Series on March 5, 2013. This webinar includes six presenters, providing you …

Recreational vs. Elite Athletes
December 7, 2012 – 8:04 am | Comments Off on Recreational vs. Elite Athletes
Recreational vs. Elite Athletes

Check out my new blog post at Massage Magazine about working with recreational and elite athletes.

Treating Muscle Cramps
October 25, 2012 – 9:45 am | Comments Off on Treating Muscle Cramps
Treating Muscle Cramps

Please check out my blog post on how to effectively treat muscle cramps over at the Massage Magazine Sports Massage Blog!  Hint:  It is not just stretching the muscle…
Click here to read the article

Olympics – Part 3
August 4, 2012 – 10:00 am | Comments Off on Olympics – Part 3
Olympics – Part 3

The preliminary round of the men’s 1500 meter run occurred Friday, and my athlete finished first in his heat. He had 48 hours to recover before the semifinal round Sunday evening.
In terms of sports massage, …

Olympics – Part 2
August 4, 2012 – 9:11 am | Comments Off on Olympics – Part 2
Olympics – Part 2

Greetings from the Olympic Park! We attended two games of women’s team handball yesterday. It is a hard sport to describe, having elements of basketball, lacrosse and water polo. With the back & …