Back pain, muscle tension, and spinal dysfunction are very common conditions, suffered by over 80% of the developed world (the part of the world that spends ¾ of their life sitting!). Fortunately, massage therapy can have a profound effect on the muscles and soft tissues of the spine, while chiropractic care can help to treat misaligned spinal joints and nerves to allow for optimal function. These conditions often work in tandem, and those that suffer from sore muscles very often have spinal misalignments that can be corrected with an adjustment. Research has shown these two therapies to be fantastic in isolation, however, these two distinct therapies can often be combined to achieve the most beneficial results.
This then raises the question:
Should you get Chiropractic Treatment before getting a Massage or Massage Therapy before going for Chiropractic Adjustment?
Let’s first look at both:
Chiropractic treatment before your massage: Chiropractic care before your massage therapy allows for a chiropractic adjustment to a better hold. After chiropractic care, your joints have just been positioned using a high-velocity, low amplitude (and completely safe) adjustment. This radical, endorphin-stimulating change to the body can have an effect on your sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous system, pain thresholds, and neuroplasticity of the brain. Having a nice, soothing, stress-relieving massage after your chiropractic adjustment, it can allow for all the benefits to be better absorbed by the body.
Chiropractic care after your massage: If a person has tight muscles, caused biomechanically or through the nervous system, this can affect the chiropractic adjustment. Making corrective changes in the body can have a more profound effect when the body is in a parasympathetic, or relaxed, state. Those that are new to chiropractic may fair better in this category to reduce any anxiety on being adjusted for the first time.
As you can see, both methods can be powerful and profound in their own way. Unfortunately, that means that there is no definitive answer to whether you should get chiropractic care before massage therapy or massage before your chiropractic treatment. Each person deserves personalized care, and a consultation with your massage therapist or chiropractor can help you figure out which order will be best for you.