As I’ve mentioned before, I’m a runner who’s trying to make her way past an injury. My orthopedic surgeon has ruled it a fascial tear or bruise in my lower leg and says that I should take it easy and run very little, if at all.
Doc said that if I do run a little bit (less than a mile), ice and Ibuprofen would help with the pain afterwards. But I wanted to do more to ensure that I can come back fully from this injury and start training for a marathon again, so I did some research on how to help along the process a bit.
Reading through this article I found in Running Times and other subsequent articles, I’ve found that foam rollers can not only be used for muscle pain but can also help relieve fascial tension as well. Enter: TriggerPoint’s GRID STK Foam Roller ($34.99). I absolutely love this little thing because I can easily give my lower legs a great massage before and after workouts, leaving me with a lot less pain to deal with.
It’s so easy to use because it’s easy to grip and you can use it in more places on your body than you can with regular foam rollers. Not only do I mainly use it on my lower legs, but I also use it on my neck, back, thighs, calves and feet.
How to use the GRID STK:
You can use it in any multitude of ways and different ways can be found on the TriggerPoint educational videos page. I use mine by focusing on two areas of my lower leg. I work the outer part of my lower leg muscle, not the top where I can feel the bone.The first section that I workout starts right above the ankle and ends at the midpoint of my lower leg. The second starts at the midpoint of my lower leg and ends right below my knee.
To get the most out of my foam roller while I’m massaging the outer muscles of my lower leg, I follow these steps:
1. Sit on the floor with your legs resting flat on the ground. Bring your foot up so that you’re making an “L” shape with your leg + foot and your toes are pointing upwards.
2. Hold the foam roller firmly to your leg and roll upwards on the first section between your ankle and the midpoint of your lower leg. At the same time, stretch your foot forward so that your toes are now pointed out in front of you.
3. If you find a knot or trigger point (a spot where it’s tender to press down on) you can hold your foam roller on it and leave it there while kneading out the spot for a good 20-30 seconds to try to work out the trigger point.
4. Repeat 4-5 times and then rest for a minute or so.
5. Repeat the same set of motions 1-3 for the second section of your leg and then again on your other leg.
The GRID STK is really the best foam roller I’ve used and is now a part of my running/workout routine. It’s definitely worth a try if you’re feeling tension and pain while you run or workout.
Until next time,