It is important to understand the difference between percussive massage and leverage compression. More specifically, tools like the Hypervolt, a percussive massage device versus a leverage compression tool like the Rolflex Pro. The Rolflex Pro is the first compressive leveraged-based foam roller on the market.
A percussive massage device, a vibration tool, is going to have a much larger effect systemically on the nervous system. This tool can be used to calm down a muscle that is either overly agitated, firing or cramping. Additionally, it can be used to move fluid through a muscle that just worked out. In the clinic, I use percussion all the time after performing DCT exercises. We tend to have a pretty strong burn leftover in the muscle. Use a Hypervolt for a few seconds on an area that’s burning. Often it stops the burn and allows us to move on to the next exercise.
Rolflex Pro and Leverage Based Massage
While the Hypervolt is a very valuable tool, I know there’s a lot of different kinds out there. You can experiment and test which ones work for you. I want to tell you the difference between percussion and leverage based massage. The Rolflex Pro allows you to do more than just a neurological trick with the body. Instead of using the percussion to calm the muscle down the Rolflex Pro provides active release therapy.
To demonstrate the difference, I can adjust the Rolflex Pro to fit a body part like my thigh. By placing my thigh between the two rollers I’m in full control of the leverage. I am also in control of where I want to apply pressure very specifically. The center roller is over my quadriceps, if I apply that pressure, I can then do active release. The release involves me slowly and deliberately contracting the muscle under the pressure.
You are working from the inside out versus a percussive massage device working from the outside in. This allows me to work and use my own leverage instead of my body weight or gravity. I can pinpoint the therapy that I want to perform. That sets compressive leverage based tools in a class of their own when it comes to massage devices.
Don’t Just Mask the Pain
Now I’m not saying that percussion massagers are not valuable, every tool out there has its value. What I am saying is that when we use those tools is important to understand their use. If you use a percussive massage device every day over and over and over again, you’re not really going to be releasing long-term knots or chronic tension that’s been in the tissue for a long time. You are going to make the body feel a little bit looser. Also, you’re going to give the body a little bit more blood to recover faster but therapeutically the muscle is not going to really be changing, the fascia is not going to be changing.
Using the Rolflex Pro, or another leverage based tool actually creates a physiological change. They make changes to either the fascia, or specifically a tension, that’s within local muscles. If you don’t own a percussive device like the Hypervolt the Rolflex Pro you should absolutely look into it.