At Bodyworks DW we get asked a lot about our favorite self care tools such as foam rollers, essential oils, pillows, etc. So, we decided to make it easy for you and put them all right here.
(Full transparency, we get a tiny commission on sales through these links. However, we believe in each of these products and we've already been recommending them to clients for years; most folks really love them!)
We love giving our clients "homework"...things that they can do on their own that can help them take control of their own pain, rather than viewing massage as some kind of pill to take when you start feeling bad. We'd rather work on the stuff that you can't "fix" on your own and get you to a place where you don't really need us beyond occasional maintenance. These tools are simple, each have multiple applications, and are totally worth having around.
Half Balls in Medium Rubber for Feet
These 1/2 balls are ideal for working on your feet and your hips. For your feet, place them on the floor and step on them one foot at a time; look out for any spots that feel stuck and gently press the affected area into the medium soft rubber. For hips, lie down on them on your side to get those impossible-to-open hip external rotator muscles! The bonus? You don't have to ever chase these around the room 🙂
Pro-Soft Foam Roller for Fascial Release
Your eyes do not deceive you...there are two different rollers here! We recommended this softer one for people who aren't super familiar with using them as others can be too hard and cause you even more pain. And pain = bad. This one also has "grooves" that will pull on your fascia for release without the need for deep pressure. You'll be able to relax into the opening much better on this one than the harder one. Yes, it costs more, but it's worth it!
High-Density Hard Foam Roller
For people who have more experience with rollers, we suggest adding on and working up to this firmer, high-density one. The Pro-Soft is best for 70% of what you would use a foam roller for, but for that other 30% this harder one can't be beat! David has both...
Racquet Balls in Pink for Back & Shoulders
These racquet balls are perfect to lean against a wall with and roll out the knots in your mid back and shoulders! Also not bad for feet, although we prefer the half balls for that. With a three pack, you can keep one at home, one at the office, and one in your suitcase for travel 🙂
Racquet Balls in Blue for Back & Shoulders
In case pink just doesn't fit with your wardrobe, we found these in blue. Didn't read the text on the pink ones and wondering what to do with these? Look left 🙂
Thera Bands for Recovery & Toning
Thera bands are a go-to for physical therapists for a reason...they are ideal for recovery work and muscle toning. No, you won't build massive muscles with these, but if you are looking to tone, shape, and maintain what you've got? Done! So light and easy you can keep them in your bag always and forever 🙂
We are not a new-agey, 'aromatherapy will cure everything,' kind of studio. We are about results based on science. However, there are some essential oils that have solid therapeutic value. Lavender, eucalyptus, and tea tree, are considered "cure alls" because they can each do a lot of different things for you. For instance, all of them are antiviral and antibacterial. So, beyond the basic mood enhancement, these are good, natural home medicine. For allergies or cold symptoms etc. — having any of the three, whichever one you prefer, is going to be a really good thing to have around the house.
Defender Anti-Viral Roll-On
This Defender roll-on essential oil is your secret weapon against colds and flus. Based on the famous "Thieves" formula used by graverobbers during the black plague, this is a tried and true recipe for keeping the sick away. As a roll-on, it's already blended with oil and safe for skin contact. Simply roll a bit on you pulse points and activate your own personal microbug shield. Bonus, it smells great and adds a nice calming mood enhancement!
Blend of Clove, Ginger, Grapefruit, & Tea Tree
Head Soothing Roll-On
This head soothing roll-on is just that! Smooth, complex, and a bit euphoric, this little guy smells a bit like floating on your own personal cloud of bliss. David has been seen opening up the tester and taking a whiff between most massage sessions and grinning goofily. Instant mood enhancer, it's just hard to stay stressed with this in the air. As a roll-on, simply dash a bit on your pulse points and watch stress lose all meaning!
Blend of Lavender, HoWood, Frankincense
Eucalyptus Essential Oil For Diffusing
Eucalyptus is a great essential oil to have around the house. When diffused on its own it has a refreshing scent that will sharpen focus, in addition to killing any viruses or bacteria. It opens up nasal passages and bronchial tubes, and therefore is a must for anyone with allergies or asthma. Blends amazingly with Orange or Lavender!
Tea Tree Essential Oil for Blending
Tea Tree oil has many of the same properties as Eucalyptus with a more medicinal scent and a few other benefits. Basically, both are very anti-viral and anti-bacterial. Tea Tree is better for skin issues such as healing cuts and scrapes, bug bites, and other irritations. Eucalyptus is better for breathing issues. However, they both do pretty well at all of the above. So if you don't want to get both, pick the one with the scent you like best. Also blends amazingly well with Orange and Lavender!
Lavender Essential Oil for Blending
Lavender essential oil has a LOT of different uses. For mood enhancement it acts as a balancer; if you are a bit manic it calms you, if you are a bit down it picks you up. It's also highly anti-viral and anti-bacterial. Basically it does any and all of the following well: calms, promotes healthy skin, relieves sore muscles, relaxes, and boosts immunity. Not bad for a relatively cheap little bottle, ay? Blends well with just about anything!
Orange Essential Oil for Blending
Orange essential oil doesn't have a high therapeutic value, but at 7 bucks a bottle it can turn any of the other oils into wonderful uplifting goodness 🙂 Throw a few drops of this in a diffuser with a few drops of either Lavender, Tea Tree, or Eucalyptus, and you'll be wanting to dance around your apartment! For the really bold, use this to make your own cleaning products. Blends well with just about everything!