Whether you run, bike, swim or participate in any endurance sport on a regular basis, there's one thing that's inevitable: muscle pain and tightness.
Most of us take the time to warm up and stretch properly to prevent injury and maintain flexibility, but unless you get a massage on a regular basis, there are areas that will remain tight no matter how much you stretch.
Spot-On? Pain Relieve
Kinesiologist Brian Dorfman, an authority on flexibility and injury rehabilitation, developed a simple, portable device called Spot-On? to give athletes an easy and inexpensive way to relax muscles and prevent injuries.
"I had a client with a back injury who had to drive more than an hour to his appointments with me," Dorfman says. "The drive was hurting more than the therapy was helping, so I started thinking about ways to give my clients relief at home and between appointments. I created Spot-On? to provide a simple way for people to reap the benefits of massage with a convenient, easy-to-use device."
Spot-On? is a lightweight ball and strap device that allows you to safely use your body weight to apply pressure to areas that are sore or tight, such as the bottom of your feet, behind your knee or along your spine.
You apply the pressure by either positioning the ball underneath you as you lean against a wall or lie on the floor (for example, by placing the ball under your lower back while lying on the floor). The strap allows you to position the ball precisely to apply pressure on tight areas. The pressure helps relieve the tightness and stimulate circulation in the area, allowing the muscles to relax.
The loop on the end of Spot-On? is also perfect for doing calf stretches. Simply put the ball of your foot on the strap and gently press your heel down for a stretch of the entire muscle.
"Spot-On? produces the same benefits as massage by applying direct pressure to help the muscle relax," Dorfman says. "The direct pressure helps relieve tension in a way that stretching can't, and Spot-On's small size makes it perfect for accessing tight muscles. Once the muscles relax, the nerves also relax, so it can help alleviate pain."