From Jackie Lai, Pariday co-founder and pre-natal yoga instructor...
My yoga journey started 15 years ago after recovery from a bad bike accident resulted in weakness on the entire left side of my body. With no strength in my left side at all, I hoped yoga would relieve the pain and strengthen my shoulders and arms. As expected, yoga helped with the strengthening part, but no matter how much I did, how much “letting go” I tried, my shoulders were still constantly locked up.
15 years of chronic shoulder, neck and back pain and lots of treatment later, my neck and shoulders still felt no differently. I owned every single massage tool and gadget available on the market. My husband joked that I was single-handedly keeping the massage tool industry alive! I took classes and studied therapeutic forms of yoga, but no matter what I did or what treatment I underwent, my neck and shoulders constantly hurt from being tight, or a pinch in the nerve. There were even times I couldn’t turn my head.
I finally found a sports therapist who helped with my shoulder & neck and introduced me to therapy balls. He worked the tissues in my shoulders and also showed me how to roll out the areas of tension and the knots in the neck. My therapist, Dr. Steve Capobianco, and his wife, Robyn, founded Functional Flow to teach people how the body is connected through different fascial chains and layers. I discovered that rolling out my feet released tension in my hamstrings, lower back, and even my shoulders! It was wild! I started to roll my feet and shoulders every day and slowly but surely saw improvement. I could feel every knot in my shoulder as the balls rolled over every tight bump!
But now, whenever I feel an ache or tightness coming anywhere, I go to my balls. They have helped to relieve tightness everywhere one could imagine. They have become my best buddies – which is why we named our product TendHer Buddies. I go everywhere with them! I have them on the plane with me when I travel, and on long drives, sometimes I even put them between my back and the seat.
As a prenatal yoga teacher, I hear time and again that women assume that just because they are pregnant they can't avoid experiencing back pain. My goal is to help moms-to-be relieve their pain by teaching them the correct moves and strengthening they need to feel better. Teaching my class is one way for me to introduce these amazing therapy balls to women who need them. Mind you, anyone with a body could benefit from them!
Don’t underestimate these little buddies! While they look like any ol' ball, everything about them is chosen for a reason. Their rubber surface is meant to be grippy, so it grips to the skin & underlying fascial layers and also the wall or floor surface that it’s being rolled on. The density is chosen so that they are not too hard (they have some "give" under a person’s weight), but not too soft (or they wouldn’t have enough pressure into the muscle). The size is also meant to replicate a massage therapist’s thumb pressing into a sore spot - just small enough to fit into body’s nooks & crannies.
Try them out, I hope they become your best buddies too!