Therapy balls address and support the body, helping to reduce pain, release tension, nourish tissues, and address structural issues. They are helpful for regular self-care practice, to address chronic tension areas, and as a supplement to other integrative care.
A therapy ball can be rolled along a tight muscle or pressed into a trigger point, addressing the tissue in a way that is similar to bodywork. Because of its shape, the ball is able to stretch the muscle fibers in all three directions, working efficiently to release tension. With the right positioning, you can control how deep you are working with the ball in order to find what works best for you.
Therapy balls can also be used to support the release of deep tension in the structure of the body. When partially deflated, they are able to provide a unique support to complex structures, like the sacrum or diaphragm. This kind of supportive stimulation allows stabilizers to release and engage in new ways, and can help connective tissue adjust in order to create space and improve range of motion.
Balls are also able to stimulate blood, lymph, and nutrient flow in order to nourish tissues. A lot of muscle and nerve pain is related to restricted blood flow, usually because muscle tension is blocking circulation to those tissues. The pressure of a therapy ball squeezes older fluids out of the tissue so that a fresh supply of blood, oxygen, and other nutrients can flow back in.
Therapy balls are an effective component of integrative care. They are easy to use at home to address tension, muscle pain, and achy joints. Balls are also effective for prolonging and supporting the benefits of bodywork sessions, and are often incorporated in more complex ways into somatics classes.