The Effects of Flexibility Exercise, Cold Compresses, and Massage on Muscle Recovery in Elite Athletes: Focusing on Literature Review

Article Type:
Review Article (دارای رتبه معتبر)

For athletes, post-competition muscle recovery is an important factor in the next competition. As recovery conditioning methods, the effects of flexibility exercise, cold compresses, and massage therapy were analyzed through literature collection.


The purpose of this study is to find out which conditioning methods and which protocols should be applied in terms of recovery to effectively to aspect on blood supply.


For papers researched between 2000 and 2022, 213 papers were collected using the keywords muscle recovery, blood circulation, flexibility exercise, cold compress, and massage using the Web of Science search engine.


Each protocol was effective when applied 48 hours after the competition, and all protocols showed a recovery effect by blood circulation. In the case of stretching, there were many papers applied to high-intensity anaerobic athletes, and in the case of cold compresses, there were many results in response to bruises and muscle inflammation. In the case of massage, the results showed that it should be performed 24 hours after the competition, when the muscles can recover on their own, rather than immediately after the competition.


Conditioning methods were applied to aid recovery by rapidly supplying blood to muscles oxidized by micro-damage and lactic acid accumulation after competition. All of the investigated conditioning methods were based on blood circulation, and a study to set the application area based on motor points will be needed when creating a protocol.

Annals of Applied Sport Science, Volume:12 Issue: 1, Spring 2024
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