With the holidays quickly approaching we wanted to provide you with a list of products that we think are helpful for resolving pain and avoiding injury. Most of the items selected were chosen based on our patients preferences. We also selected quality products and a few gems that would be super fun to have in your home. We regularly provide information like this to our subscribers. If you are in to receiving great resources right to your inbox then sign up!
Gemini Mobility Ball $34.95
The design of this mobility tool is questionable to say the least… it has some interesting names in our clinic. Regardless, patients tend to love it! Especially when working on their neck. It always beats out the old school taped lacrosse or tennis ball method. The cone shaped ends also help you apply pressure to trigger points.
This tool has been around for some time. Nothing beats it when it comes to working on trigger points and sore upper traps. You can also work on a host of other areas. It comes with a guide that demonstrates different techniques.
HeavyMed Ball Green Ball$17.34
This ball wasn’t originally intended for mobility. What we have found is that it tends to be more comfortable than a lacrosse ball. The firmness is just right for soft tissue work. They also come in a variety of sizes. The green ball is great for getting into the lower back, glutes and hamstrings. The larger heavymed balls (yellow) are great for working around the abdomen and hip flexors. If the lacrosse ball is just a bit too hard and the tennis ball is a bit too soft, reach for this one.
Optimizing the use of your TENS unit can be a little challenging if you never received an education on it. Different settings can be used on this device depending on your goals. They provide settings to help with recovery after workouts (reduce local swelling), pain relief, and muscle stimulation to help improve muscle activation with exercise (something your TENS unit can’t do). More importantly, you control it right through your phone! It gives you instructions on how to use the device specific to the area you want to treat. Super simple.
Rogue Monster Bands Green $19.80/ Black $24.75
These bands can be utilized for a million different things. In the clinic we will use them to assist with stretching, lower back traction and some assistance with exercises (i.e. pull ups). Having one in your gym bag is a must. The green band applies about 65#’s of pressure, which is plenty for most stretching exercises (you can find this in Supple Leopard). The black band provides 100#’s of resistance. This is usually more than enough resistance for anyone that I put on a traction table. If you are using them to assist with pull ups then it depends on how much assistance you need.
The science behind kinesiotape is spotty at best. Regardless, it seems to help resolve pain. In clinic, I will usually place it around muscles or irritated joints. Often with the goal of reducing local swelling or enhancing stability at a joint. I find that the tape gives people a better feel for where that body part is in space. This often leads to a reduction in pain. Why? Good question. This could be a whole blog topic so I digress. We are recommending Rock Tape because it tends to be more durable than other brands we have used.
Voodoo Floss Two pack: 7’ ea. $24
More often than not I use voodoo floss for compression around a swollen joint. Remember that old RICE thing (Rest, Ice, Compression, Elevation)? Reducing local swelling after an injury or a workout can be assisted with this compression wrap. The makers also designed it to assist with “myofascial release” and joint mobility. The band definitely helps us see gains in joint and muscle flexibility when appropriately used.
Kettle Shell $99.95
I just think this product is awesome… and I might be jealous that I did not come up with it. Kettlebells are expensive! If you have some old dumbells lying around this is just what you need!
TRX Suspension Trainer Kit $149.95
If I had to pick one piece of equipment for my home it would be the TRX. It allows you to perform a variety of different movements regardless of your level of fitness. It is a great way to incorporate cross training into your workouts. Walking and running are great, but adding a little variety is important. It wouldn’t hurt to mention that some cheaper knock off versions of the TRX exist. I can’t confidently speak to their quality though.
Supple Leopard– Kelly Starrett $35.45
Why Do I Hurt? –Adriaan Louw $15.95
Taking care of that “bum knee” and “old back” may require you to broaden your knowledge this year. This one two punch may seem like a weird combination, but I think it is a sweet one! “Supple Leopard” is more geared toward the athletic population. It talks about mobility techniques and ways to optimize your mechanics during exercise to help reduce pain and avoid injury.
On the other hand, “Why Do I Hurt” is a book that talks about the often misunderstood or overlooked side of pain. The one that actually matters the most. That is understanding how our brain actually creates pain. If you have always connected pain with tissue healing you are confused my friend.