Massage Tools for Your Tool Belt

Massage Tools for Your Tool Belt

Many of our clients know that stretching and preparing the muscles before exercising is a good practice. Yet time and again, we see clients who have hurt themselves or strained a muscle because they neglected to do the proper warming of the tissues before calling on the body to perform.

Olympic athletes know the value of stretching, rolling and massaging as a way to wake up the circulation that will transport vital nutrients and oxygen to the muscles that will be lifting, running and generating a lot of energy. If you are active, you know how important it is to prepare the body for strenuous activity.

We commonly hear of our clients simply bending down to pick up a bar of soap in the shower in the morning or playing a friendly game of basketball with their buddies, only to tweak their back or pull a hamstring by simply moving. 

It does not have to be full-out exercises or workouts that bring on the discomfort. It comes when you least expect it. So how can you prevent such injuries from happening?

Besides the obvious things like stretching, warming up, and strengthening, we recommend incorporating massage tools to have at your disposal. 

Like any routine, finding the right tool, timing, and intervals takes trial and error. Start with massage tools that will cover a lot of other areas in your body to get the most out of your purchase. 

Some tools come with instructions or links to videos on how to use them. Educate yourself on the proper way to use the tool before using it. A good massage therapist will take the time with you to show you how to use it for the needed areas.

Buying a tool online has its downsides in that the tool may not accomplish the goal you are looking to achieve or may not be as good quality. Experiencing the product before purchasing it and knowing how to maximize efficacy is an invaluable service you can’t get on the internet.

Top 5 Tools for Your Toolbelt

  1. Foam Roller – Every household needs one of these tools. When used properly, you can roll out quads, hamstrings, glutes, back and lats. That’s a lot of area you can cover with one tool. It can be used on a wall or the floor and some are travel-worthy.
  2. Body Back Buddy – You’ve seen the “S-curve” cane device with the knobs on it that hooks over the shoulder or around the back where you can apply pressure to knots and modify to your comfort. It’s great for those hard-to-reach areas that just need to be “kneaded.”
  3. Massage ball (firm like a lacrosse ball) – This gets deeper into areas like the glutes or shoulder blades when you lie on the floor and just apply compression. Minimal rolling can achieve great relief of stiffness and pain.
  4. Foot roller or spiked ball for foot massage – The rubber tips of these massage balls actually grip onto the skin and apply a stretching of the myofascial layers of the muscles and can relieve a deep ache that stretching cannot accomplish alone.
  5. Massage Gun – Not all massage guns are created equal. It’s really important to get proper instruction on usage, like not applying to bones – soft tissue only – and not to apply to the neck or head area to not cause dizziness or disrupt vital blood vessels along the neck.

When stretching, soaking, walking, rest, and massage tools don’t help the stiffness and pain, seeing a physician is a good idea to rule out anything serious. If everything checks out, then add the phone number to a great massage therapist, and have that in your tool belt at all times.