TRAINERroller™ in the Times


Gear: Ways to work out the kinks


September 12, 2011

Proper recovery is a key element for consolidating the gains of a workout and getting you ready for the next one. That's why serious athletes swear by massage, whirlpools, ultrasound and even hypnosis to increase flexibility of muscles and tendons that are sore, stiff and kinked. But you don't need an appointment at a fancy training facility to get the job done, as these at-home recovery devices prove.

On a roll

Trainerbrands TrainerRoller: A 6-inch diameter foam roller with PVC outer sleeve imprinted with instructions and drawings of 12 common myofascial-release recovery exercises.

Likes: Practical, educational, efficient, inexpensive and so easy to use that it makes plain foam rollers obsolete. The rollout exercises, simply drawn and explained in clear English on the comfortable rubber covering, instruct you to hit almost every problem body part and remind you how to do it — good for people like me who often forget how to use these rollers. (An example: "Place roller under calves with arms/hands behind you, then lift glutes off ground and roll back and forth from ankle to knee.") You can do all 12 exercises for a good whole-body warm-up, a cool-down or an effective get-out-of-bed wake-up.

Dislikes: None

Price: $34.99 for the 24-inch model; $29.99 for 18-inch version. (877) 872-8126;

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