Self-massage using a foam roller or a spikey ball feels good, but it can also alleviate pain and prevent further injuries. But which is more effective?

Problem: Generalised pain or tightness; stretching fascia, or connective tissue.

Solution: Foam roller

“Foam rollers are great for stretching fascia, or connective tissue in the body,” says physiotherapist Alex Lakos (

Problem:  Sharp pain, like a knot.

Solution: Spiky ball.

“When you put pressure on a trigger point, it will hurt, but massage should never be so painful you can’t tolerate it, so use less pressure if needed. If pain doesn’t improve with self-massage, you should see an expert,” Lakos says.

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