Effects of sports massage and intermittent cold-water immersion on recovery from matches by basketball players

A. Delextrat, J. Calleja-González, A. Hippocrate, Neil Clarke

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    71 Citations (Scopus)


    The aim of this study was to compare the effects of intermittent cold-water immersion and massage on perceptual and performance markers of recovery by basketball players after competitive matches. Eight men (age 23 ± 3 years; stature 190.5 ± 8.9 cm; body mass 90.3 ± 9.6 kg; body fat 12.8 ± 4.8%) and eight women (age 22 ± 2 years; stature 179.0 ± 8.5 cm; body mass 77.6 ± 9.2 kg; body fat 22.5 ± 6.6%) basketball players participated. Massage, cold-water immersion or control were applied immediately after competitive matches, followed by assessments of perceptual measures of recovery and physical performance, countermovement jump and repeated-sprint ability 24 h after intervention. There was lower perception of fatigue overall and in the legs immediately after the massage and cold-water immersion condition (P <0.001; = 0.91). Furthermore, women had a lower perception of fatigue in cold-water immersion than massage at any testing time (P <0.001; = 0.37). Jump performance was greater after cold-water immersion than the control condition (P = 0.037, = 0.37). There was no effect of any of the recovery interventions on repeated-sprint measures (P at best 0.067, at best 0.68). The results suggest that both massage and cold-water immersion improve perceptual measures of recovery. Furthermore, cold-water immersion improves jump performance although neither such immersion nor massage had an effect on repeated-sprint ability. This suggests that, overall, cold-water immersion is more useful than massage in the recovery from basketball matches, especially in women. Please note some symbols from the abstract do not show up correctly on this platform - see http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/02640414.2012.719241 for the full abstract.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)11-19
    JournalJournal of Sports Sciences
    Issue number1
    Publication statusPublished - 2013

    Bibliographical note

    The full text of this item is not available from the repository.
    This is an electronic version of an article published in Journal of Sports Sciences, 31 (1), pp. 11-19. The Journal of Sports Sciences is available online at: http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/02640414.2012.719241.


    • countermovement jump
    • fatigue perception
    • gender
    • repeated sprint ability


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