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48 m a s s a g e & b o d y w o r k s e p t e m b e r / o c t o b e r 2 0 1 6 included compression to 80 mmHg of four circumferential chambers. Beginning with the most distal chamber and moving cephalad, each chamber was sequentially inflated for 8–10 seconds, then partially deflated for 15 seconds. The inflation and deflation of each chamber in a cephalad direction continued for the full 20 minutes. Pain (soreness) and fatigue were measured pre-race, immediately postrace, upon standing after receiving the assigned intervention, and for seven days postrace approximately 30 minutes after waking. Two final 400-meter runs at maximal speed were also performed on days three and five postrace, with the results being electronically submitted to investigators. The results immediately after the treatment demonstrated that subjects in the massage group had significantly lower muscle pain compared to the control group, and both massage and pneumatic compression resulted in lower muscular fatigue compared to the control group. However, there were no differences in pain, fatigue, or 400-meter run times between the three groups during the seven days postrace. STUDY LIMITATIONS There were several limitations to this study. First, the self-report measures of pain and fatigue are subjective and could be affected by many factors. Also, the 400-meter times were all self-reported, possibly leading to bias or error. Third, approximately 40 percent of the subjects took NSAIDs during the race. Even though the percentage of use was similar between groups, this may have led to an overall change in the results. Finally, this study only assessed one 20-minute session. A different treatment duration, session number, or treatment style may have led to improved outcomes. Many other studies have measured massage for recovery after various forms of athletic performance. A recent systematic review provided an overview of previous clinical trials on this topic. 2 To be included in this review article, clinical trials had to include: massage as an intervention for recovery purposes, pre/ post measures of physical performance, and a control group with passive recovery. The investigators found 1,123 potential articles, of which only 22 met all inclusion criteria. Of the 22 studies discovered, five used automated massage through a vibration, water jet, or compression device, and 17 used classic manual massage that typically included effleurage and petrissage (occasionally with vibration, friction, or tapotement) performed by a trained physiotherapist. FINDINGS The results of the manual massage within the 17 studies demonstrated greater benefit with shorter massage durations, such as 5–6 or 8–12 minutes, as opposed to treatment sessions SOMATIC RESE ARCH The results immediately after the treatment demonstrated that subjects in the massage group had significantly lower muscle pain compared to the control group.

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