How a sports/deep tissue massage can aid better running

Are you training for the Bath Half Marathon, (which is just a few weeks away in March), or maybe you’re training for another running event, whatever event you should be looking to incorporate massage into your regime.

We get many enquiries at The Bath Massage Co from runners asking about Sports massage and how it can help them; massage and running go hand in hand, and here’s why…

It is very likely that massage helps improve flexibility and reduces risk of injury, as well as delivering a whole host of other benefits too.

Running requires sustained, repetitive muscle contractions. The greater these contractions are, the greater the force generated is, and the more muscle fibers are required to shorten. These sustained, repetitive muscular contractions translate into speed, power, and distance allowing us to run further and faster. However, this can also translate to shortened, tight muscles, joint range of motion losses, and decreased circulation to compressed tissues.
Massage works to elongate the muscles, relieve muscle tightness, restore joint range of motion, and improve circulation.

Massage improves the effectiveness of the circulatory system.  This system is responsible for oxygen transfer, nutrient delivery, and waste removal at the cellular level. Our circulatory system delivers blood enriched with oxygen and nutrients, like glucose and electrolytes, to muscle tissue. It then picks up and removes muscle metabolic by-products and waste.

Furthermore, the circulatory system impacts all the other systems of the body too. Therefore, increasing the effectiveness of the circulatory system directly or indirectly impacts our entire body. Better circulation means better delivery of nutrients and oxygen to surrounding cells and tissues.

Therapeutic massage can elicit very specific physiological responses, such as, increased blood circulation, increased diameter of blood vessels, and decreased blood pressure. These effects are significant for everyone, but are of particular importance to a runner looking for ways to recover faster, prevent injuries, and improve performance.
Other Benefits include:

  1. Dilates blood vessels which promotes circulation and lowers blood pressure
  2. Assists venous blood flow
  3. Promotes rapid removal of metabolic waste products
  4. Improves the oxygen carrying capacity of red blood cell
  5. Improves pulmonary function by loosening tight respiratory muscles
  6. Reduces muscle soreness and fatigue
  7. Increases/restores joint range of motion
  8. Reduces cortisol levels and norepinephrine and epinephrine levels
  9. Restores posture and gait
  10. Improves connective tissue healing

It is important to note that the effects of massage are cumulative. This means that the effects and benefits increase with sequential, repetitive massages. Receiving one massage prior to a race will not reap the same benefits as a regular program of massage therapy throughout your training. Massage therapy also works best as a preventative program. Once an athlete sustains an actual injury, seeking medical attention comes first. After a proper diagnosis and treatment, massage therapy may become part of the recovery process.

When should you have a sports massage?
Massage treatment plans are very individual and we always create one for your individual needs. The most important goal is to set a regular schedule for your massages whether it is once a week, once a month, or every two months. Pre-race massages should be scheduled ideally 3-5 days before the race and, likewise, post-pace massages should be scheduled 3-5 days after a race when muscles are no longer sore to the touch.
Massage is a great training reward to look forward too! And, last but not least, between massages, drink lots of water, stretch after your runs, foam roll often, and eat clean healthy foods to extend the life of your massages.

So, if you’re in training and are interested in massage get in touch and we will help you with a massage plan for your forthcoming event.

The Bath Massage Company will be supporting Mentoring Plus at this years Bath Half Marathon event and providing runners complimentary post event massage.

Hypnobirthing course dates – JULY 2016


Hypnobirthing course launch

Wise Hippo Logo Block CMYKI will be running Hypnobirthing courses from July 2016 in Bath. These will be available either in a group or 1-2-1.

For more information please see my dedicated Hypnobirthing page here

Latest Neal’s Yard Remedies Offer November 2015

Buy 2 get 1 free on NYR Hand Creams

Normal price is £10 but we have just launched this amazing offer for a boxed set of three hand creams for just £20 …. perfect for a bit of early Christmas shopping!!

Contact me to order here








Meet our therapist – Jo Greenwood

Q1. How long have you been a member of the team at the Bath Massage company?

I’ve been working at the Bath Massage Company for over 18 months now. I started out doing Saturdays but it’s since grown and I now practice Wednesdays through to Saturdays.

Q2. What did you do before you joined the company?

I was a career civil servant – so very different! I left in 2013 when my daughter was one, and decided to retrain, initially in talking therapies before finding my true home with the physical therapy of massage.


Q3. What treatments and therapies do you specialise in?

I qualified in Holistic Massage Level 4 at the Bristol College of Massage and Bodywork, and I’m a member of the Massage Training Institute (MTI). I love doing lovely slow, relaxing, deep tissue work, especially tackling clients’ tight shoulders and necks. I’ve done further training in myofascial techniques which I often incorporate if I feel the client would benefit from it.

I’m privileged to work with a lot of pregnant clients too and was fortunate to train with Susan Yates of the renowned Wellmother organisation. You’ll often find me using the gym ball in those sessions!

Q4. As a pregnancy massage therapist, what advice do you often find yourself giving clients?

To stay active throughout their pregnancies balanced with plenty of rest, especially if sleep is harder to come by in the latter stages of pregnancy. To let gravity take its course and relax after a day spent on their feet, by kneeling down and leaning onto a gym ball, sofa or chair. Their partners can also help by applying a little pressure to the sacral area of their lower backs which helps relieves tightness and aches in the lower back and hips – very welcome! Also, to quite literally rest with their feet up, which helps prevent swelling (oedema), especially in the ankles.
Most importantly, to listen to the advice of the medical professionals (and others), but to trust the wisdom of their own bodies too.

Q5. Do you have a favourite essential oil or blend, and why?

It’s got to be Rose Geranium – it’s uplifting and balancing and has that lovely, relaxing spa smell to it!

Q6. How do you relax and rejuvenate when you are not working?

I usually attend a yoga class on a Monday morning which I find really sets me up for the week. I go along to Huw Griffiths’ Mindfulness sessions in Larkhall when I can, and have attended a couple of Huw’s woodland sessions – always uplifting and life affirming. We’ve also taken over an allotment recently, and I find just being in that space relaxing. And on a Sunday, which is often the only full day I have with my partner and our 6 year old daughter, we love to go for a walk – Bradford-on-Avon to Avoncliff with a stop at the Cross Guns is a favourite of ours! Like a lot of Bath folk, we love Cornwall and it’s become a family tradition to head there at Easter for a break. I’m also lucky enough to have been brought up by the sea, and we regularly head back down to Dorset to visit friends and family – time spent at the coast is always rejuvenating!

Q7. What kind gestures do you appreciate the most?

Simple things – a smile, an acknowledgment, a door being held open, a text from a friend – the usual I guess! Brendan, my partner, always brings me a cup of tea in the mornings, which is always appreciated! I especially love spontaneous cuddles with my daughter, Hebe, and being presented with her artwork. If she and Brendan have been shopping, I often receive flowers at her request. I’m lucky that both Brendan and Hebe are two of the kindest people I know!

Q8. Where in the world could you see yourself living other than where you are now?

If my partner had his way, we’d be living where I grew up – on the south coast of Dorset in the Weymouth and Portland area, ideally with a couple of dogs and a house with a view of the sea! But I have to say, I feel very at home in Bath, and couldn’t see myself living permanently anywhere else. Mind you, a holiday home in Cornwall would be very welcome!

If you’d like to meet Jo for a treatment she currently is available Wednesday to Saturday  – to make an appointment please contact us.

Meet our therapist – Kasia Gigon

Q1. How long have you been a member of the team at the Bath Massage company?
I have been member of the team for almost 2 years now.

Q2. What did you do before you joined the company?
I am a mum to my 10 year old boy, Jakub and worked for the Thermae Bath Spa before joining the Bath Massage Company.

Q3. What treatments and therapies do you specialise in?
I specialise in sports massage and deep tissue therapy, and also offer relaxing massages such as Swedish, Hot Stone and have just started offering Warm Bamboo treatments.

Q4. Do you have a favourite essential oil or blend and why
love essential oils. My favourite is Rose Geranium because it is comforting, balances mood and at the same time it gives an energy boost. It also smells like heaven to me.

Q5. As a specialist in sports massage, what do you think is unique about your treatments?
I take a very considered approach in all treatments I provide. Listening to the clients needs and making sure that we are aiming for the same results is very important to me and the treatments I provide. As a sports massage therapist, I do not always agree with the ‘no pain, no gain’ rule – many people relate a sports massage with an unpleasant painful treatment but how I approach treatments is to always consider the individuals and their relevant needs.

Q6. How do you relax and rejuvenate when you are not working?
After long day at work, soaking in a hot bath and snuggling in bed with a good book, magazine, or watching a funny sitcom is what I need. However I love to be active and running is a favourite activity of mine so if my workday starts a bit later I’ll squeeze in a run first thing. My family is everything for me and free time usually means family time. As a family we love spending time on the beach or exploring new and old places. Even if we’re on sand, an old footpath, on our bikes – a few minutes outdoors, enjoying fresh air is just wonderful. 

Q7. What Is special about the place you grew up?
I grew up in Poland, in a region called Lower Silesia which is famous for its many castles and palaces (more than 100) which have so much history behind them and some very unique architecture to see. The breath-taking views of the beautiful Sudetes mountains are also very special and as someone who loves to be active, I spent much of my time in the mountains – hiking in the summer, skiing and cross-country skiing in the winter – it’s definitely worth a visit!

Q8. Where in the world is your favourite place to visit?
Croatia – it is the perfect combination of beach life with soaring mountains and breath-taking scenery. So far, I’ve managed to visit two of beautiful islands this country has to offer… only 1242 left!

If you’d like to meet Kasia for a treatment she currently is available Monday to Friday – to make an appointment with Kasia please contact us.

Meet our therapist – Mel Williamson









Q1. You’ve recently joined the Bath Massage company, what brought you to join the team?
It was a stroke of luck. I’ve just moved back to Bath and was looking for jobs in massage therapy,
but more specifically therapeutic, deep tissue, and pregnancy massage. I searched online for
massage companies in Bath and the first one that came up was the Bath Massage Company. I
went onto the website and loved everything I read, so I wrote to Polly on the off chance she was
looking for a new therapist and my timing couldn’t have been more perfect. What stood out to me
over other massage companies was the emphasis on focusing on the client as an individual, and
not just treating each client the same or following a set routine. It’s hard to find that.

Q2. What did you do before you joined the company?
I owned my own company for 6 years. I started as a Health Coach, helping people address their
diet and lifestyle, and then I trained in Massage Therapy and Reflexology.

Q3. What treatments and therapies do you specialise in?
I specialise in therapeutic massage which tends to be deep tissue, reflexology and pre- and postnatal
massage and reflexology. I have completed lots of CPD courses but I keep coming back to
the same treatments. I believe that being committed to two or three therapies can be more
effective than practising too many.

Q4. Do you have a favourite essential oil or blend and why?
I like to use a good quality eucalyptus oil as a lovely inhalation when the client first lies down, and
then when they turn over. On pregnant clients I substitute eucalyptus for cypress. Massage can
make you so congested and yet it is so important to breathe! I personally love the citrus scents…
grapefruit, lemon, and tangerine are favourites, as I find them very happy. Another favourite is
rosemary which really helps to clear my mind, and if I’m feeling really unbalanced I burn

Q5. As a reflexologist, what do you think complements your treatments?
As a reflexologist I think it is really important to love and understand feet. I especially love it when I
give a full body massage and pick up on areas that are tight or out of balance, and then continue to
work these areas on the reflex points on the feet to further help the issue. I completed a course in
Spinal Reflexology two years ago which focused on just working the spinal reflex on the foot. Each
nerve between the vertebrae connects to an organ in the body. So for example, if the thyroid gland
is out of balance, working C7 on the foot can really help. I have found it the most effective way to
treat clients so far.

Q6. How do you relax and rejuvenate when you are not working?
I walk everywhere and that is my therapy and exercise. Music tends to be my go-to when I’m
starting to feel low, I love playlists with happy folk music…it just makes everything instantly feel ok.

Q7. What kind gestures do you appreciate the most?
The simple ones. A bunch of wild flowers, a beautiful card, a smile. Of course the kindest gesture a
client can give is a referral!

Q8. Where in the world would you like to travel to next?
New Zealand…I get the impression they are big on health and wellness and all things natural,
which is just up my street. But not for a long time. I have no travel bug left in me for the moment!
I’m focusing on growing some roots for now.

If you’d like to meet Mel for a treatment she currently is available Monday, Tuesday, Friday and Saturdays – to make an appointment with Mel please contact us.

My article on Small Steps

 Posted: January 15th 2014

Small Steps publication kindly published my article on the benefits of Baby Massage

click on image to read article…

Small Steps Magazine

New online booking

IMG_0734We have now launched an online booking service where you can check our availability and book your appointment with ease.

You can use the BOOK page on our homepage to make all your bookings, and your details will be securely kept on our system making it even easy each time you book.

New team member – Mel Williamson

We are very (very) excited to announce that we have a new member of the team…introducing Mel Williamson.

Mel trained here in Somerset, where she completed the ITEC Level 3 Diploma in Holistic Massage. She has been practicing in St. Kitts for the past few years where she partnered with local practitioners to expand her knowledge base and create an individual style blending deep tissue, Swedish, active release therapy, and trigger point therapy.

Her extensive practice and broad client base allows Mel to address conditions with the most efficacious techniques, leading to rapid, lasting results and permanent resolutions of not only symptoms, but also the underlying causes.

Mel also specialises in care of pregnant women, and completed a specialist course in antenatal and postnatal care in London, and she also gained the ITEC Level 3 Reflexology Diploma to compliment her treatments and provide yet another avenue to healing the body naturally.

Mel not only addresses the physical structure through various massage techniques and reflexology, but also incorporates diet and stress management techniques to help create a lifestyle that is not draining but rather rejuvenating. This results in more energy, more productivity, and a happier work and home life.

Treatments available with Mel include: Swedish massage, Deep Tissue massage, Reflexology, Pregnancy Reflexology and Pregnancy Massage.

We are delighted to welcome Mel into our team x