Essential oils and sports Whether you are an amateur or an advanced sport enthusiast, athletic efforts puts the body into stress: soreness, muscular aches, tendinitis, exhaustion… In order to keep this physical activity pleasurable, essential oils help prepare the body as well as its recovery. Oils for muscle aches. Before and after the effort. During the effort, oxygen, carbohydrate and lipid levels are mobilized and metabolic “wastes” can accumulate in the muscle… Among those “wastes”, the lactic acid is responsible for cramps and muscle aches. Whether it be before the athletic effort in order to better prepare the body or after, in order to favor muscle drainage and to eliminate those toxins with good rehydration and rest, some essential oils bring all their benefits through a simple massage applied on the concerned muscle zones. Among the most popular, camphor rosemary essential oil is a powerful muscle relaxant allowing the soothing of cramps by dissolving the lactic acid crystals. It is recommended that the oil be used before the effort (in preventive) and after the effort (in recovery). Moreover, tarragon essential oil can act in prevention of cramps and aches. It will be useful for athletes to also add Italian helichrysum essential oil into their first aid kit, the oil being useful for prevention against traumas in order to reduce potential bruises or muscular micro-tears. Essential oils for a “boost back” effect In case of temporary tiredness and to help stimulate the body, essential oils that are rich in terpene can be used. They are known for working on the adrenal glands, stimulating the natural production of cortisone having anti-inflammatory, analgesic and energetic properties. Scotch pine and black spruce essential oils can act in synergy when they are diluted in a vegetal oil and applied on the kidney zone. The use of linalool-thyme and clove oils will also have revitalizing effects. Athletic performance goes also through a mind of steel Beyond the physical performances of athletes, the brain has an essential role during the preparation, the practice and the recovery. The properties of some plants help to recenter emotions and to eliminate psychological blockages by going through olfaction (olfactotherapy). It is the case with laurel essential oil which brings assurance and determination during athletic trials…in other words, it is ultimately the winner’s oil. Verbenone-rosemary oil also gives courage and helps to better manage the opponent (for team sports). Finally, peppermint essential oil gets rid of fatigue and stimulates the body as well as the mind. On your marks, get set, go! Essential oils: usage warning These suggestions do not replace your doctor’s advices. The use of essential oils is not recommended in the following cases: pregnant or breastfeeding women, children younger than 6 years old, respiratory allergies. If in doubt, consult your doctor.