Stretching Vs Massage: When, Where And Why

Self-Help Approach

When we experience pain through the body initially we often align it with some form of muscular stiffness or tightness. We often try different remedies like massage heat creams, stretching or asking a friend, partner or family member to give a bit of love and massage the area to help feel better. Sometimes this does the trick periodically and sometimes it resolves the issue completely.

So how do we know when we need to stretch and when we need a massage to help?

Massage helps improve muscular tension by replenishing the tissues with fresh and adequate blood flow. By increasing blood flow to the area and replenishing these tissues we reduce the sensitivity, tightness and stiffness to the areas thus alleviating the pain. Stretching the area however does not obtain the same benefits as mechanism of action for stretching differs to that of massage.

Our top 5 indicators of when you need a massage:

  1. Relieve Stress
  2. Reduce Muscular aches and pains
  3. Improve Sporting Performance and Flexibility
  4. Increase Blood Flow
  5. Help maintain healthy spinal movement and function

With stretching we the main form of improvement comes from the lengthening of muscle fibres and re-aligning them correctly so the damaged and scarred tissues can undergo through the repair and recovery phase. Yes stretching will somewhat help stimulate and increase blood flow similar to massage but not to the same level or extent. With an adequate stretching regime massages will not be required on such a consistent and regular occurrence.

Our top 5 reasons to maintain a regular stretching regime:

  1. Maintain and Increase Flexibility
  2. Increase your Range of Motion
  3. Increase Blood Flow to Muscles
  4. Help prevent muscular strains, aches and even tears
  5. Help heal damaged and misaligned muscle tissues.

So in summary a massage can help with a number muscular issues and concerns that you may be faced with. Understandably it can also help with emotional stressors and even possibly help manage anxiety and boost immunity. Here at LiveWell Family Chiropractic we have our patients seeking massages for a number of different reasons and if you’re preparing for a gruelling training program then no better way to keep on track for your fitness goals then with a well timed massage. Maintain the improvements made from your massage with a stretching regime targeting the main muscle groups and joints under tension and load!

To make a time with our Massage Therapist please call (03) 9995 8164 or book online at


  1. Jennifer Chen

    Great article! Karen, the new remedial massage therapist is fantastic.

    1. LiveWell Family Chiropractic

      Thanks for your feedback Jennifer! Karen has had amazing feedback from all of her patients to date.

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