by Bill "Guru of Shoe" Lorenz
The Stick bills itself as “A Toothbrush for Muscles” and the description could not be more accurate. We all rely on our toothbrush to keep our teeth healthy and The Stick does the exact same thing for our muscles.
These simple little devices have been around for years. I bought myself a Stick shortly after I ran my first marathon in 1997, and they were already standard equipment in many runners' do-it-yourself therapy arsenals. But I am still surprised by how many runners, cyclists, and triathletes are still unaware of the benefits of The Stick.
Post-run or exercise induced muscle soreness is typically some form of simple muscle kink or knot that will respond to manipulation in the form of massage or other similar stimulation. The action of rolling The Stick over the affected area inactivates trigger points (muscle knots or kinks), warms the muscles, and encourages the movement of nutrient rich blood into the area. This action relives pain, increases range of motion, promotes flexibility, and accelerates recovery. If you are a regular user of massage therapy, The Stick probably won’t eliminate your desire for massage services (just like using your toothbrush won’t eliminate the need for regular checkups by a dentist), but it could easily reduce the frequency of your visits.
The Stick comes in several varieties and lengths.
The Travel Stick is the shortest and travels easiest. It is effective on legs or when you or someone else will be using The Stick on another person.
The Body Stick (our best seller) is purchased for all over body use and all major muscle groups, either by yourself or with another. For those individuals shorter than 5'10" a Body Stick works well.
The Power Stick works best for those taller than 5'10”. It will also work well for those who are shorter than 5'10" but lack flexibility, or for anyone wanting extra leverage.
We have two that are slightly more flexible than other Stick products. The Marathon Stick is a little longer than the Travel Stick and the Flex Stick is a little shorter than the Power Stick. We would recommend these for someone who prefers a lighter pressure muscle massage. They are also recommended for thin individuals as well as kids, young teenagers, and seniors.
Matt Moberg, masters runner, former 4-minute miler, and “Shoe Yoda” here at the shop, has this to say about The Stick: “After recurring calf strains and exhausting physical therapy, massage, and acupuncture treatments, The Stick was recommended. After just three days of following the protocol I was back to running pain free.”
We try to keep several of each length in stock in the shop (Kyle's Bikes, Ankeny, Iowa), so if you are in doubt about which length will work best for you, feel free to stop in and take each length of The Stick for a test drive.
We have Bill's recommended Stick varieties available for you.