Foam rollers and spiky/massage balls have become an increasingly popular way to manage minor muscle tension and aches at home or after exercise. Our practitioners at Chadstone Region Osteo often get asked about when should you use them and which one is better, so we decided to write a blog post!
Both foam rollers and spiky balls are intended to help with minor muscle tension which often results from our daily lives (computer-related neck tension anyone?) or from exercise, for example you might enjoy using a foam roller for your quads, hamstrings or calves before or after going running. Foam rollers are often recommended as a good warm-up tool for pre-exercise, or as a recovery aid post exercise.
Whilst both are good tools to have in the tool kit, they are not the be all and end all. If using a spiky ball or foam roller feels good and helps reduce your tension, and you’re using it for short periods then either method is fine. However, you should not be causing yourself pain whilst using them!
However, if you have recurrent or prolonged muscle tension and you find that you are constantly rolling out the same muscles it is a good idea to have chat with one of our osteopaths, as sometimes muscles that are constantly tight need some help with specific strengthening exercises.