Every so often I get a client who suffers from range of motion issues and pain in their joints. Many of them who come to me seeking help are usually initially told that stretching would correct their problems. And while this is true, I always have to explain to them that there is more to the process of alleviating joint pain.
Joint pain is typically developed when your muscles experience an injury, become overused (like doing shoulders presses too often), or even when they are underused from being a couch potato. Whatever the case may be, the muscle will become stiff and push the corresponding bone out of its socket creating friction in the joint capsule. The best method to fix this problem is by mobilizing.
Tim Collins is a certified personal trainer and owner of TC's Strength & Conditioning in Omaha. He blogs for livewellnebraska.com. Read more from Tim.
Mobilizing means applying pressure to painfully knotted tissue. It's almost like a self-administered deep tissue massage. There are several methods that work well and here are a few I use with my clients before and after a training session:
This method requires you to position the foam roller on the tensioned area. Use the weight of your body to roll back and forth to apply pressure. This should be done a minimum of 60 seconds or until extreme discomfort.
This is an effective method for pulling the out-of-position bone back into its socket. Using a thick resistance band, wrap one end around the tissue of the stressed joint capsule and strap the other end to a pole or an immovable object. Create tension by pulling your body away from the opposite end. About two minutes of pressure is ample!
Voodoo Floss Band
This method is by far the most popular and effective of the three techniques. The Voodoo Floss Band is a rubber compression tool that gets wrapped around the restricted tissue and pushes inflammation away from it. It's used very similar to athletic tape. Increased range of motion is typically noticeable after two minutes of use.
Not only are these three techniques great for alleviating pain, they are helpful in preventing joint problems as well. I utilize these methods on myself as preparation for my daily workouts.
If you don't have one of these tools already, it will be worth your while to invest in one or all three.
Be sure to consult with a licensed professional if more specific techniques are needed!