Everybody seems to talk about what you should be doing during a massage, but what about after? What you do after a massage is just as important, if not sometimes even more important, than getting a massage. Continue reading to learn about the 8 best things, in my humble opinion of course, to do after you receive a massage!
1. Drink Water.
We as human beings, and I feel like especially Americans, do not drink enough water. 75% of our bodies is made up of water, and when we don’t get the necessary amount, our body literally starts to shut down, starting with non-crucial functions first. Also, when we’re consistently not drinking enough water, it makes it harder for our body to filter out toxins and allergens, making your body that much more toxic. I always suggest that after a massage you should be drinking at least a liter of water – that’s about 4.3 cups of water for all you non-metric folks – to help your body flush out
toxins that the massage is pushing through. Massage stimulates the lymphatic system in the body, which is where a large portion of toxins are stored. As an added flavor and toxin cleansing enhancer, try adding fresh lemon juice to your water!
2. Vinyasa Flow Yoga.
Light forms of exercise, especially Vinyasa Flow Yoga, are great to do after a massage. Vinyasa Flow Yoga is slower paced and is more about stretching the body and relaxing as opposed to strengthening. In this mild form of yoga, the yogi focuses on their breath more and getting a good stretch, while still targeting specific areas of the body. This is a great option if you received your massage in the morning. After your massage, go to
this style of yoga class, then meet up with a friend for a cup of detoxing dandelion tea!
3. Stretching & Breathing Exercises.
Just in case you didn’t pick up on that last bit, stretching is one of the best things to do after a massage. Massage loosens up your muscles, so take advantage of greater flexibility while you can! Stretching during a time of increased flexibility will not only feel great, but will also help you achieve longer lasting results than stretching on cold muscles. Massage also helps to break up fascia (picture: saran wrap for each individual muscle fiber as well as each muscle group as a whole), which can wreak havoc on your musculoskeletal system and really keep your body out of whack, and possible out of alignment.
4. Take an Epsom Salt Bath.
Not only is taking an Epsom salt bath relaxing, but it replenishes crucial minerals to your body through the integumentary system (that’s your skin!), such as magnesium. It takes at least 12 minutes for the full effectiveness
to be reached, so pour in some bubbles, turn on relaxing music, close your eyes, and focus on your breathing. Once you get out and toweled off, do some full body stretching, starting with your lower body first. Magnesium is crucial for intercellular processes, and a deficiency has been connected to chronic conditions such as depression. After an Epsom salt bath, you’ll notice that you’ll sleep more deeply, too! Add some lavender essential oils for an added calming effect, plus you’ll smell great, too!
5. Go for a Light Walk.
Doing some sort of light activity, such as walking, is encouraged after a massage, especially if you receive a massage earlier in the day. Walking is low-impact, which means that you won’t be un-doing all the work you and your therapist achieved.
Most Americans don’t get the recommended amount of sleep they need in general, and after a massage you need even more to help your body process the toxins and repair. Personally, I always feel tired the next day if I only get 7-8 hours. So, do yourself a favor and set aside 9-10 hours for sleep. It’s best to drink at least one liter of water immediately after a massage, but no more than 1-2 hours prior to bed time. Otherwise, you’ll be running to the bathroom all night!
Well there you have it – these are the top 6 things to do after getting a massage. If at all possible, avoid caffeine and alcohol. Massage releases stored toxins in the body, so the last thing you want to do is give your body more to process. Your night out can wait – your health is more important.
What do you like to do after a massage?