25 Jan

Clients shutter when I bring out this little marshmallow stick…

This harmless-looking apparatus has made grown men cry.

Stick-ing people is one of the best parts of my day. If you’ve never used a stick before you’re in for a treat.

Why do I love myofascial release so much? Well, about four years ago now I started spinning on a regular basis. I did that for about 3 months and then returned to running. The switch back was awful. My knees felt like they were locking with every step. I had to stop exercising for almost six weeks and that was horrible. I knew I had IT band problems so I went to see physio after physio, getting ultrasounds, stretches and various strengthening exercises. Nothing worked. I then spoke to a super fit friend of mine who suggested I try myofacial release (the stick or foam roller) and it was amazing!

The first time I hooped on a foam roller I was sweating from the pain after two minutes. Determined to get better … typical A type, I brought my foam roller with me everywhere; university common rooms, libraries, boyfriends house, etc. I’d pull out my foam roller and roll for 5-10 minutes here and there. People thought I was nuts … probably still do! But it worked! I was back to running and had no pain whatsoever. The myofacial miracle maker!

Here’s why myofacial release essential:

We have layers of fasica tissue all over our body. Fasica, unlike muscle does not have a muscle belly and therefore it cannot be stretched with typical methods of stretching.

Imagine a pizza dough being stretched out from your hip to your knee. It will be bunchy. You need a roller to roll out the bunches in the dough… the same thing happens with your fascia.

If you don’t stretch your fascia then you will be far more prone to injury. I argue that it is the single most important thing to stretch. You will know when your fasica is in good shape because rolling over it should be absolutely painless.

A great alternative to a stick is the foam roller:

The foam roller will accomplish the same thing as a stick but BE RUTHLESS.

Make sure you’re rolling over an uncomfortable spot, resist the temptation to make it easier by shifting your weight to a comfortable place.

Here’s a video of how to use your foam roller:



7 Responses to “The STICK”

  1. Shannon Curley January 25, 2012 at 4:29 pm #

    where do I get a lovely compact foam roller like THAT?

    • beautyandthebod January 25, 2012 at 6:20 pm # – I got mine at Physical Assets in Toronto. The GRID is by far the best one though. You can get that at Physical Assets too. Mine is currently on loan.

      • Ramesh February 11, 2012 at 9:31 am #

        I've got one and I can tell you that is does work for me. I use it bfroee and after runs. It seems to warm up and slightly stretch my leg muscles, piriformis, and IT Band really well. After a run, I use it to massage my piriformis and IT Band (they tighten up). So far so good. I really like the results. I've done the SMRT CORE Training. It's quite a good core workout, but I don't think it's for beginners. I consider myself fairly fit and it was challenging to do even the first level.The reason I went with this product is that I used it in physical therapy. I've been nursing an unhappy knee. The GRID is able to help stretch my IT band and piriformis so that my knee is in better alignment.

  2. Cathy Preston January 26, 2012 at 12:14 pm #

    Being a recipient of the stick I can tell you ITS BRUTAL but GREAT! The difference in the last few weeks is unbelievable. If you don’t have a foam roller get one – it will save you from future injury.

  3. Wided February 11, 2012 at 8:23 am #

    I like the foam rloler better. I use The Stick to get Teddy's toy out from under the bed! @_@

  4. Beatrice February 16, 2012 at 5:26 am #

    I love your post, thank you for sharing.


  1. Treadmill vs. Elliptical « Beauty and the Bod - February 24, 2012

    […] running is awesome for bone density building. As long as you’re properly stretching and foam rolling after the run you should be ok for joint […]

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