Foam Rolling / Self Myofascial Release / Self Massage all are done using a soon to be archaic apparatus (at least for those of us that own a Total Gym) called the foam roller. The foam roller has been in service for many decades with very few advancements in design and usage. I’ve used and taught the use of the foam roller for 15+ years and have always found it frustrating and an irritant to my shoulders. The frustration is due to the constant repositioning of myself and the foam roller as it seems to have a mind of its own. The irritation to my shoulders is due to supporting my body weight with the shoulder joint while the humeral head (ball) grinds into the glenoid fossa (socket) while the surrounding rotator cuff and deltoid muscles work hard to keep the ball & socket joint intact. Still I used and taught the use of it because it works, much research and science back this up. I use the past tense of use and teach because I now use the Total Gym Foam Roller Attachment exclusively. The roller stays put while the gliding board supports my weight and alleviates the grind. Also, the muscles don’t have to work hard as the arms skeletal structure absorbs the weight.
As the video explains how I came up with the idea I’ll also give a quick overview in text. One of the great benefits of the foam roller is to alleviate pain in the lateral aspect of the knee joint due to Iliotibial Band Syndrome, (current research suggests the use of a foam roller for ITBS is ineffective but it worked for me and was used often in physical therapy). On this occasion I was rolling out next to my Total Gym when I came up with the idea. Both of these products are time honored effective fitness tools that seemed a natural fit to me, but I wasn’t sure how to go about connecting them, it was just a matter of time. Some four months later my wife and I were on vacation at Virginia Beach. They were having an art show that spanned the better part of the board walk. There were many tables needing table cloths so they proceeded to roll out these table cloths down to a hard-cardboard cylindrical tube with a cap on each end to pass a rod through. Of course, they had no need for this so in the trash it went. Now I saw none of this going on I just put two and two together to figure out where this little gift from heaven came from. When I saw this in the trash little synapses were firing in my head saying “That’s It”. I walked a little further before I knew I had to go back and snatch it up. Upon arriving back home I cut it down to size, attached it to the Total Gym and proceeded to roll away. I was incredibly excited at the ease of use.
I continued using it and found that I could roll out all aspects of the lower body. I found knots in my quads I didn’t even know existed. Rolling out the ITB was easy. There is an excerpt from a previous blog on this site on the use of a traditional foam roller which states “This is not a relaxing type of stretching method by any means” but with Total Gym Foam Roller it is. Massage done right should be relaxing but the traditional foam roller is far from it, we just didn’t know how far. Now we do, this new product is going to revolutionize the foam roller and Total Gym had the vision to see this upon my presentation. I’ve been using this product for over four years now and have found no muscle I can’t target with ease.
Keith Daugherty – I have been an ACE certified personal trainer for 15 years specializing in seniors. I have worked in physical therapy as a technician and exercise specialist for 6 years, that’s where I fell in love working with seniors. Their appreciation when I show them the path of feeling youthful again grows my heart three sizes bigger. Oh, I’m also an inventor now. Thank You.