Monday, April 6, 2009

Trigger Point Therapy Kit-help at home

No matter what time of year it is, runners and triathletes all have the same problem to deal with. Muscles that get tight and cause problems! But, since there are some big events coming up in the next 6-8 weeks, it is time to start getting rid of some of these problem areas. Wouldn't it be great if we all could go to a sport massage therapist a couple of times a week? If we could, I would recommend it. But, since life happens and there are other bills to pay, then investing in something like the Trigger Point Therapy kit is a great idea.

You can do this self therapy at home and no matter which kit you buy, it is much cheaper than seeing that therapist all the time. Although, I do urge everyone to see one once or even twice a month when your training load is high even if you have this kit. The main purpose of trigger point therapy is to be able to work on problem areas yourself as often as needed. And they really do help a ton! The Trigger Point website has lots of great info,trigger point charts and video clips on there about how to use the massage kit. Here are some other tips about using them.
  • Buy a Trigger point kit
  • Stay tuned to your body and use what you bought at least once a week on at least trouble spots
  • Learn and use different techniques and angles in addition to what is in the booklet or website.
  • Learn specifically about trigger points and how to release them
  • Trigger points can take a litte while to release so be patient. Relax, stay on one spot for upto 5-10 minutes, breathe, and stay with it until you feel the knot release.
  • Roll mostly in the direction of the muscle fiber strands except when you have some stubborn areas and then you can experiment with a 90 degree or "cross fiber" rolling. This can help break up stubborn adhesions.
  • Regarding how fast to roll, roll on the slower side since we are not pizza dough.
  • Use tools at a relaxing time like after a hot shower, before bed or mid day break
    I have found that relaxed stretching and self massage work followed by 5 minutes of laying down does wonders to calm the nerves and other muscles not being worked
  • Use everyother day or every couple of days if you are using the tools aggresively. There is a lot of muscle damage occuring if you have a lot of nice that have been rolled out. Just like a hard workout, your damaged tissues do need to recover and rebuild from aggresive self massage treatment.
  • Trigger point can be done more frequently if it is used solely to relax stubborn knots and there is no rolling motion.

So, now is the time to give this a go if you have been wondering what to do about those aching knees, shins, hips, shoulders and back. The store sells a couple different sizes of the kit so choose the one that is right for you. I will say, however, that I am really glad I got the one with the ball and two different size rollers. I have used all the pieces to keep up and RUNNING!


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