July 21, 2008
If you read the latest race report at http://bengreenfieldtri.blogspot.com, I mention a device called the Muscletrac, which I've been successfully using on the multiple knots and adhesions I develop while swimming, cycling and running.
This is basically a self-massage device with special wheels attached. When rolled across the muscle tissue, the individual articulating wheels allow for targeted penetration and stretching of the muscle tissue and overlying fascia. It has quite a different feel from the similar tool that is more commonly seen – The Stick.
So how does this actually help performance and recovery?
Restrictions such as muscle tightness, knots, trigger points and adhesions can cause pain, decrease range of motion and ultimately lead to injury. By applying pressure and releasing these tight areas, performance and mobility can be improved! I'm a big fan of the Muscletrac, especially since it's smaller and more portable, for those times when you can't throw a personal massage therapist in your suitcase. This is useful for not only athletes, but also sedentary individuals who need to enhance blood flow and flexibility.
Prior to my recent triathlon, I knew I wouldn't have a chance to warm-up or stretch prior to the race. So during the drive to the race, I used the Muscletrac on my legs, shoulders and back to improve range of motion. It worked perfectly. After the race, I used the same strategy to work the inflammation out of the tissue, vastly reducing post-race soreness and enhancing recovery.
Click here to check out the Muscletrac website, which gives detailed instructions for implementing on a wide variety of muscles.