Research: MORASKA,

Listed in Issue 145


MORASKA, University of Colorado at Denver and Health Sciences Center, 4200 East Ninth Avenue, Denver, CO 80262, USA,, has found that levels of therapist training affects the effectiveness of massage for muscle recovery after exercise.


The aim of this study was to assess the effectiveness of massage on muscle recovery as a function of therapist education in participants who completed a 10-km running race.


Race participants were offered a 12- to 15-min massage immediately post-race. Participants were randomly assigned to a student therapist with either 450, 700, or 950 h of didactic training in massage. Muscle soreness was recorded by questionnaire using a 0- to 10-point visual scale at time points immediately before and after massage, and 24 and 48 h post-event.


895 subjects were recruited, with 317 subjects returning questionnaires from all time points. Race participants who received massage from student therapists with 950 h of training reported significantly greater improvement in muscle soreness across time compared with those who received massage from therapists with 700 or 450 h of education in massage (p < 0.01). On study entry, there was no difference in muscle soreness (p = 0.99), with a group mean of 4.4; at the 24-h measurement, soreness was 2.4, 3.7, and 3.6 for the 950-, 700-, and 450-h groups, respectively (p < 0.01).


Level of therapist training was shown to impact effectiveness of massage as a post-race recovery tool.


Moraska A. Therapist education impacts the massage effect on postrace muscle recovery. Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise 39 (1): 34-37, Jan 2007.


The result that practitioner training impacts upon treatment outcomes makes perfect sense. However it is always good to see the statistically determined research results

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