Lacrosse balls are a powerful tool that can aid in alleviating pain and restoring functionality to sore muscles through myofascial release. It’s a hands-on technique in which gentle, sustained pressure is applied to connective tissues. It’s a technique that’s been used since ancient times.
Physical therapists maintain that myofascial pain is different than ordinary types of pain as it’s centered at what they call trigger points. The exact point of pain can be difficult to pinpoint. Muscles and connective tissue are supposed to be moveable and elastic when light pressure is applied. When pain results from trigger points, the connective tissues can feel taut and stiff.
The areas in which pain is felt aren’t always where the pain originates. With myofascial release, the gentle pressure applied to the muscles and surrounding area work to loosen and stretch the tissue, thereby relieving pain and restoring freer movement. Many athletes have found that they can ease soreness themselves utilizing a lacrosse ball to roll it against the painful areas.
A lacrosse ball can be used for pain in the back, glutes, pecs, calves, spine and feet. If you can easily reach the area of pain, you can use your hand to roll the ball over the affected area. When pain is in the bottom of the foot, you can simply move/roll your foot back and forth across the ball.
When pain is in the back, you can lay on the floor on your back or side – depending on the affected area – to move the ball back and forth across the affected area. You’ll know you’re reaching the right place when it seems to “hurt” a little more. You can also lean against a wall and move the ball around that way. The technique is applicable for the glutes and other areas.
Lacrosse balls are especially beneficial for myofascial massage due to their construction. They’re more solid and don’t compress down like other types of balls. Using a lacrosse ball is a simple, inexpensive and effective method to relieve sore muscles at home and on the go.