You’re in excellent shape and yet you still feel pain in weird and unpleasant places. When you bend down to pick up your kids, jump up to answer the door or do basically anything involving your glutes, you can’t help but let out little grunts of pain, wishing you had the time (and budget) to get the massage you so badly need. Sound about right? Well, have you heard about foam rolling?

Good news, you’re about to feel much better. First, repeat after us: massage shmassage. Next, go buy a foam roller (also known as a muscle roller). Turns out you don’t need a trip to a fancy spa or to blow a massive wad of cash on pricey products. All you need is a foam roller and about 10 minutes to feel better today. According to fitness expert Jeff Kuhland, “Self-myofascial release is a fancy term for self-massage to release muscle tightness or trigger points.”  We should warn you, using a foam roller isn’t exactly as relaxing as an afternoon at the spa. Forget about the dim lighting, aromatherapy and Enya. Foam rolling can be painful but it works, and the best part is you can use them anytime, anywhere and while you are doing whatever you want. Here are 10 more reasons why foam rolling is just as good as a massage…and is about to change your body and your life.

1. You’re in control.
You drive the bus with the roller, so you’ll always know where to roll it. One problem with professional massages is that it’s often hard to explain where you feel pain and the masseuse may miss key pressure points where you are experiencing tightness. Plus when you get in the massage zone (aka, you pass out on the table, or is that just us?) you might not want to speak up to give the masseuse direction or critique. When foam rolling, you are in charge so you know exactly what feels right, where you need some extra attention and what to adjust as you work.

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