The Benefits of The Grid Foam Roller
The Grid Foam Roller, however, is a current favorite. Made by Trigger Point Performance Therapy, this new sleek foam roller design, uses EVA foam over a hollow core, which prevents break down over time. The foam design provides a variety of different densities, foam patterns and widths that provide a more targeted trigger point feel. These three different zones are designed to feel like (1) fingertips, (2) forearm/palms and (3) fingers and thumb. By using the different zones, you can easily vary the amount of pressure on specific muscles.
At about 13" long and 5" around, the Grid is much more portable than traditional foam rollers. Although I had no trouble using the Grid on all the major muscle groups I use a traditional foam roller on, it was a tight fit across my upper back and shoulders, and I suspect others will have similar issues.
Finally, the 1-year warranty, is tough to beat.
The Downside of the Grid Foam Roller
Even though it's designed with a variety of patterns and foam densities to simulate different types of massage, I had a bit of trouble, first, noticing a major difference between the types, and second, staying on the desired foam type. For some areas (calves, IT band) I wished the foam was softer, and for some areas (upper back, glutes) I needed more firmness. Compared with other foam rollers, the Grid worked exactly as advertised and all in all, it's a fine product.
I still use a longer, standard foam roller for some of my self massage work, simply because the length offers a bit more ease of use for some muscle groups.
Also, at $40 the Grid foam roller price point is quite a bit higher than a standard foam roller.
That's about all I can find wrong with this amazing new option for foam roller fans!
Why Use a Foam Roller
Used before exercise, foam rolling can help increase blood flow and prepare the muscles for exercise. Even if you don't exercise intensely, foam rolling eases aches, pains and tension caused by sitting at a computer all day.
Keep in mind that not all aches and pains and injuries can be helped by foam rolling. Check with your doctor before you use a foam roller, especially if you have some health conditions such as heart disease, PAD, problems with circulation or fibromyalgia.