Should You Get a Massage When You Have Sore Muscles?

massage helps sore muscles

So your body’s aching and your muscles are swollen, what do you do? Many would tell you to get a deep tissue massage to release the tension, but that’s not the case if your aches and pains are caused by a recent injury.

Recovering From a Recent Injury?

If you’ve been recently injured and haven’t fully recovered yet, then it’s best to stay away from the massage table. Unless you’re visiting a physiotherapist who understands your injury and knows exactly how to relieve the tension without further injuring you, don’t stop by a massage parlour spontaneously. There’s a difference between simply having sore muscles and recovering from a mild to severe musculoskeletal injury. Deep tissue massages can make matters even worse. If you need quick relief, wait at least 48 hours after the initial injury to receive a massage. Otherwise, ice the area several times a day to reduce swelling, inflammation and soreness.

Extremely Sore Muscles?

Experiencing heavily sore muscles that aren’t the result of an injury is another story. It’s still a good idea to stay away from deep tissue massages, as sore muscles are more tender to the touch. Getting a traditional Swedish relaxation massage is your best bet, as it’ll stimulate blood circulation and bring oxygenated blood towards the sore areas. This works to flush toxic waste, specifically lactic acid which causes soreness, from the muscles.


If a Swedish massage isn’t intense enough to loosen up your sore muscles, then it’s time to try a deep tissue massage. Because this is a stronger massage technique, you’ll need to pay attention to how your body reacts during the session. If your muscles start spasming or cramping up immediately, then your body isn’t ready for a deep tissue massage, as your muscles are too inflamed. If discomfort or pain don’t arise until midway through your massage, stop your masseuse immediately to avoid injury.

Resting Period Between Massages?

We’d recommend that you wait up to five days between massage therapy treatments for sore muscles. It’s important to keep your body hydrated after a massage, so make sure to drink plenty of water. You can also do a few light stretches to improve muscle recovery between sessions.


At Pro Fusion Rehab, our highly trained Milton and Pickering physiotherapists are dedicated to helping you accomplish your health and recovery goals. Located in both Pickering and Milton, Ontario, our physiotherapy clinic was designed to help patients who experience acute or chronic pain as a result of a sporting injury, vehicular accident or surgery. With health care services like massage therapy, acupuncture, physical therapy, cupping therapy, reflexology, ultrasound therapy and more, give our specialists a call today and book your appointment.

Should You Get a Massage When You Have Sore Muscles?