Why Massage Therapy is an Important Part of Physical Therapy
By: Amy Montia, PhD, LMT. At Physio Logic, most physical therapy patients receive massage therapy (also called...
FUNC YOU UP! Podcast
The best in wellness, nutrition, and functional medicine in eight minutes or less.
previous arrow
next arrow

Sports &
Medical Massage Therapy
at Physio Logic NYC

  • Orthopedic-Based Sports and Medical Massage Therapy
  • Sessions Designed to Promote Stress Relief, Relaxation, and Facilitate Recovery from Injury or Chronic Pain
  • By appointment only

Sports and Medical Massage Therapy, or manual therapy, is an integral part of treatment at Physio Logic. Physical therapy patients at Physio Logic receive individualized manual therapy built into each physical therapy session. Our Licensed Sports and Medical Massage Therapists work closely with the Physical Therapists and Chiropractors to provide individualized effective treatment for each patient.

An effective complement to physical therapy, medical massage therapy reaches deeper layers of muscle and fascia to help release restricted and adhered tissues. Medical massage expedites recovery of injured tissues by promoting the circulation of oxygenated blood and lymphatic fluids, releasing nerve entrapment, restoring fascial matrix flexibility and re-aligning muscle fibers. Furthermore, manual therapy effectively reduces pain perception, eases muscle tension, re-hydrates cells with fresh nutrition, and flushes out metabolic toxins that build up in injured tissues. Our Massage Therapists are New York State Licensed practitioners that have advanced training in soft tissue manual therapy. The sports and medical massage therapists work closely alongside the Physical Therapists and Chiropractors to facilitate and expedite patient recovery.

Physio Logic’s Sports and Medical Massage Therapists are available to book longer standard-length massage sessions to supplement the manual therapy that is built into each physical therapy session. (Full length massage sessions booked outside of physical therapy or chiropractic care are not covered by insurance, but can be used toward flexible spending accounts offered by some insurance companies).

Booking regular maintenance massage sessions with our Licensed Massage Therapists after completing a prescribed treatment plan is also an excellent option to sustain the benefits gained from physical therapy or chiropractic care.

Physio logic massage therapy is available to everyone. You do not have to be a patient at Physio Logic to book a sports or medical massage.

Meet the Sports & Medical Massage Therapy Team at Physio Logic

Amy Montia, PhD, LMT


Licensed Massage Therapist

Nicole Kabel, LMT


Licensed Massage Therapist

Stephen Donnelly, LMT


Licensed Massage Therapist

Atsuhiko Kawamura, LMT


Licensed Massage Therapist

Kim Mondo


Pilates Instructor / Licensed Massage Therapist

Treatment Modalities

Active Release Technique (ART)

Active Release Technique on Psoas Muscle
Active Release Technique (ART) is a patented, state of the art soft tissue therapy system that treats problems in muscles, tendons, ligaments, fascia and nerves. Headaches, back pain, carpal tunnel syndrome, shin splints, shoulder pain, sciatica, plantar fascitis, knee problems and tennis elbow are just a few of the many conditions that can be resolved quickly and permanently with ART. These conditions all have one important thing in common: they are often a result of overused muscles.

Every ART session is actually a combination of examination and treatment.

The ART provider uses his or her hands to evaluate the texture, tightness and movement of muscles, fascia, tendons, ligaments and nerves. Abnormal tissues are treated by combining precisely directed tension with very specific patient movements. These unique treatment protocols, with over 500 in all, allow providers to identify and correct specific problems. ART is an approach that is customized to meet the individual needs of the patient.


Myofascial release

Fascia refers to the layered bands of fibrous connective tissue that wrap and surround all muscles, bones and organs. Inflammation, trauma, surgery and postural imbalances all create adhesions and restrictions (“snags”) in fascia. To identify areas with abnormal fascial tension, broad even pressure is applied to an area using an oil-free hand (or elbow, forearm or thumb), and then fascia is dragged slowly in a defined direction without losing contact or gliding across the skin. To release myofascial snags, fascia is stretched or bended slowly in a focused area until a change in the tissue is felt. The goal is to warm up irregular fibrotic tissue, then “iron” it out to make it more aligned and flexible, and thus eliminate abnormal tension in an area.



Effleurage on Arm
The term effleurage comes from the French word “effleurer” meaning to glide lightly. With or without oil, the therapist uses hands or forearms to glide superficially across an area using superficial pressure, and often in a slightly circular motion directed toward the heart. Repetitive effleurage promotes better circulation, decreases nervous system firing and can reduce pain perception in an injured area.



Petrissage on Trapezius Muscle
The term Petrissage comes from the French word ” petrir” meaning to knead. Petrissage kneads muscles and fascia to effectively loosen the area and increase local circulation. With or without oil, the therapist uses palms, fingertips, knuckles or forearms to squeeze, wring, lift and roll muscle tissue and fascia. Pressure and depth vary according to patient tolerance and therapeutic goal.



Compression on Hamstring
Compression helps diminish overactive nerve firing in muscles, encourages blood flow to tight oxygen-deprived muscles, and warms up surrounding fascia to promote flexibility. Compression is usually done over clothing and may be applied broadly (with a forearm or palm of hand), or on a concentrated point similar to Trigger Point Release (with a thumb or elbow). Compression depth and time varies according to patient tolerance and therapeutic goal.


Deep muscle stripping

Deep Muscle Stripping on Leg
Muscle stripping is a bit like removing tangles and knots from long hair. Using a thumb, elbow, forearm or fingertips, the therapist glides along the contours of a muscle, following the direction of the muscle fibers. Depending on the size of the muscle being stripped, the therapist may have to perform several passes to sufficiently treat the whole muscle from one attachment to the other. Oil or lubricant is usually used to allow for controlled glide. The therapist may passively move the joint back and forth slowly (or have the patient actively move their joint) during the treatment. Deep muscle stripping helps to, restore normal muscle fiber length, identify and loosen trigger points, and promote local circulation.


Trigger point release

Trigger Point Release on Lower Back

Trigger points are hard palpable hypersensitive knots found in taut muscle bands. They are locally tender and usually cause characteristic referred pain in other areas of the body when compressed. A twitch response in surrounding muscle tissue is often felt when a trigger point is pressed. Deactivating trigger points help decrease pain associated with the taut muscle fibers, and help restore circulation, mobility and strength in the affected area. Here is a good visual metaphor to describe what is happening in a muscle with trigger points: Take a string of yarn and notice how it hangs straight. Then tie some knots in the yarn until the string shortens and no longer hangs down in a straight line. The fibers in and around the knots are tense, tight and directionally unorganized, while the fibers on either side of the knot are being pulled and overstretched.

To deactivate trigger points, gentle and (not too deep) pressure is applied to the knot for anywhere from 10-50 seconds until a change in the tissue is felt. Sometimes a “press and stretch” technique is used to help unstick the adhered tissue around the knot and restore the shortened muscle fibers to their normal resting length.


Cross fiber friction

Cross Fiber Friction on Shoulder Muscle
Cross fiber friction helps disrupt and breakdown palpable adhesions usually found near tendons and ligaments. The patient’s joint is first moved so the affected tissue is in a relaxed accessible position. Then using reinforced fingers or thumbs, the therapist sweeps back and forth with firm contact, perpendicular to the tissue fibers. Since the therapeutic goal is to create a temporary local inflammatory response, this technique is used cautiously and selectively. It’s not appropriate for some patients who are on high doses of anti-inflammatory medications, have systemic inflammatory conditions or certain autoimmune disorders.


Joint mobilization

Joint mobilization is a type of passive movement of a skeletal joint. It is usually aimed at a “target synovial joint” to achieve a therapeutic effect. The most common mobilization technique employed by manual therapists is turned oscillatory mobilization. These mobilizations aide in decreasing pain and increasing mobility.


Lympatic drainage

Manual lymphatic drainage is a type of gentle massage which is intended to encourage the natural drainage of the lymph which carries waste products away from the tissues back toward the heart thus reducing swelling or edema in the tissues.


Gentle stretches

Gentle Stretching on Leg
“Tight” muscles feel tight because, 1) muscle fibers and fascia may be contractured (shortened), or 2) they may actually be overstretched. In either situation, stretching is a good complement to all manual therapy techniques. Tensile forces generated from a stretch help to restore circulation in ischemic (blood/oxygen-deprived) areas, and realign/restore normal length to myofascial fibers. All stretching is individualized to the patient’s pain tolerance and treatment phase.


Frequently Asked Questions

What kind of massage therapy do you offer at Physio Logic?

At Physio Logic we offer safe and effective sports and medical massage therapy by NYS-licensed Massage Therapists.

We are an integrative medical facility, not a spa, meaning we focus on areas causing pain and stress from injured, overused and tight muscles. We work closely with our doctors.


What kinds of techniques are used during a session?

Sessions are tailored to suit individual needs. Sessions usually include myofascial release, compression/decompression, trigger point therapy, petrissage, muscle stripping and joint mobilization/stretching.

Also available are:

  • Pregnancy massage
  • Reflexology
  • Active Release Technique
  • Shiatsu and Thai massage

If you are looking for something specific, call and we can match you with the right therapist.


Do you offer deep tissue massage?

Yes. Most sessions use safe deep tissue techniques based on what you are presenting clinically. Our therapists have the ability to adjust the amount of tension to treat even highly sensitive areas such as post-surgical cases. Your feedback is carefully listened to throughout the entire session.


What should I wear when I get a massage at Physio Logic?

You should undress only to your comfort level. But remember it’s best if the therapist has direct contact on and around the area of discomfort. It is also helpful to locate relevant scars, moles, open wounds, etc.

If you are comfortable to undress for the session, the therapist will keep you covered completely by sheets and expose only the area being worked on and will re-drape the area when finished. If you choose to stay fully clothed, you should wear comfortable loose fitting cotton clothing (tank top, shorts or wide legged sweatpants) without snaps, embroidery or buttons. We have clean t-shirts and shorts available to borrow.


How often should I get a massage?

That’s up to you. If you need massage therapy to address an ongoing chronic problem, commit to weekly sessions for 3-4 weeks with the same therapist. For maintenance or relief from mild muscle tension, once a week to once a month is recommended. Our therapists can  help you determine what is clinically appropriate.


I have a headache, is it okay to receive a massage?

Yes, but be sure to tell the the therapist if you took any medication for it, how long you have had it, how it feels, and where in your head/body you feel it most, what makes it worse, etc.

Headaches can be exacerbated by muscle tightness, so massage therapy can be very helpful. Make sure you are well hydrated and do not have a completely full or completely empty stomach before the session. Report dizziness immediately.


I am getting over a fever, flu or head cold. Is it okay to receive massage?

Do not come in for massage if you have a fever. You should be fever free for 24 hours before coming in for massage therapy.

If you have a cold with congestion, it is a good idea to take a decongestant (without drowsiness) before the session. Proper diaphragmatic breathing is very important for an effective massage session. It is better to book a massage for when you do not have copious nasal secretions or blocked nasal passages.

Massage therapy is very helpful for symptoms related to sinus pressure and pain. It is okay to get a massage if you have sinus pain. Tell the therapist before the session so that we can bolster you properly.


I've never had a massage at Physio Logic before, what can I expect at my first appointment?

When you arrive, the front desk will direct you to waiting area until your therapist is ready for you. Your therapist will meet you there and bring you in to a private massage therapy room separate from the medical clinic. The therapist will ask you a few questions about what your goals are for the session and do a brief assessment to record any imbalances or asymmetry in your body while standing up. The therapist will leave the room and give you a few moments to undress to your comfort level and get onto the table. You should use the bathroom before beginning the session.


I currently have intense or acute pain, is it okay to get a massage?

If you can make it into the office, then its okay to get a massage. We are an integrative medical facility- offering medical care, chiropractic care, physical therapy, and acupuncture. If massage therapy is not enough to alleviate your pain, we can help refer you to the proper resource to help you get better.


I have pain radiating down my arm (or leg). Is it okay to get a massage?

Yes, it is okay to get a massage if you are experiencing radiating pain. But be sure to give the therapist a full explanation and history of your symptoms. We can do decompression techniques and muscle/fascial release techniques that can help to minimize the pain. Trigger point therapy also helps relieve referred pain patterns. If you do not get any relief from massage therapy, Physio Logic offers a full array of alternative options including medical care, chiropractic care, physical therapy, and acupuncture to get you feeling better.


The last time I had a massage, I felt worse afterwards. Why?

Give your body a full 48 hours to recover from an intense massage therapy session before assessing how you feel. Massage therapy breaks down scar tissue, releases tight fascia, lengthens shortened muscles, promotes lymphatic drainage, flushes toxins from oxygen-deprived muscles and can temporarily make joints unstable and more vulnerable. All of these things can make you feel not so great for the next day or two. Be sure to stay fully hydrated, eat ample amounts of protein, and get plenty of sleep for 48 hours after the session. Stay away from diuretics, caffeine, alcohol, and known inflammatory foods to increase healing in your body. Ask the therapist for suggestions about exercising after the massage session. Simple corrective exercises or stretching techniques that your therapists suggests can help to minimize temporary discomfort. Immediately call us if you feel limb weakness, instability, numbness, intense pain, or radiating pain after your massage.


Contact Us

Sports & Medical Massage Therapy Related Blog Posts