As if childbirth weren't enough to give you pains in places you didn't even know could hurt, raising kids takes its own physical toll.
- Craning your neck over a breastfeeding baby to check for swallows,Schlepping around babies in your arms, jutting a hip out to distribute the weight are all part and parcel of parenting.
- Moving your baby into and out of the crib
- Shifting baby between stroller and car seat
Sound familiar? Even if you weren't ever into weight lifting, it has now become a part of your every day job description. Plus you are doing seemingly never ending reps.
Weight lifters are told to warm up before staining themselves and similarly to stretch before and afterwards to prevent injury.
The easiest ways to relieve stress and strain are with a DIY massage. This can be accomplished with 3 powerful tools that you may even have lying around the house already.
- Single ball
What you need is a solid but somewhat spongey, flexible ball. Yoga therapy balls are wonderful,but if you don't have one, lacrosse balls, or even one of your kids bouncy balls might do. Depending on how hard of a ball your muscles can withstand, tennis balls can also do the trick. Stand against a wall and sandwich the ball against the wall with your shoulder. Apply pressure to right spots. To loosen a tight hip,lie on your side and put the ball under your hip joint. Use your body to move the ball up and down the length of your leg. You can even roll it under your foot for a foot massage.
2) Peanut ball.
These are 2 balls attached together that give you the ability to hit balanced points on your body. (Around your spine or sacrum/tailbone). As you are moving your body you have the ability to massage 2 points at once. For example, laying down on the floor with the balls around your spine. You can move your body up and down and adjust pressure. For additional weight lift the rest of your body off the ground to focus the pressure. You can alternatively try 2 detached balls but this will require additional maneuvering and balancing.
My favorite locations :
Base of the skull
Around the spine
Around the tail bone
3) Foam roller
Staples of every gym, foam rollers allow you to massage even larger muscles more effectively. You can adjust the position of the foam roller according to your needs. Foam rollers are particularly helpful for tackling large muscles like your quads and thighs.
Functional exercise, which is the practice of doing exercise that mimics real life movements,is all the rage now. So give yourself some credit momma for being a home gym bunny- you do functional exercise all day long! (and sometimes at night) Give yourself a DIY massage for those aching muscles, without breaking the bank!