The FasciaBlaster by Ashley Black
The first time I heard about this I was at work, in a little dark, room, right next to the Pilates reformer machines of the rehabilitation center where I worked in 2015. Loud 80's music was blaring and the physical therapy technicians were shouting instructions to patients while joking and laughing with each other. The room I worked out of, was not much bigger than a closet, with no windows, and very thin walls. I tried to create a peaceful environment as much as possible for my patients, which meant I first had to do it for myself by tuning other things out. It wasn't always possible, in fact, most of the time I was unintentionally eavesdropping on all the different conversations around me. That day I heard a woman's voice excitedly chiming in: "did you hear about that new stick with nubs that are supposed to get rid of cellulite?"
I must confess that my first reaction to this was a chuckle. It sounded like one of many gimmicky tools that hit the market. This one sounded like a rolling pin which runners often use on their legs. Then a few days later I found an advertisement for this cellulite busting tool on my Facebook feed and clicked on it. I was blown away by the number of testimonials, before and after pictures, and the slew of videos on how and why it works, how to use it, and the RESULTS. I wasn't so interested in it for the cosmetic value but by the fact that a manual therapist had invented it. The applications were numerous even though the marketing was targeted for cosmetic reasons. If it could change the shape of your thighs, then it could also help release adhesions in the thick connective tissue, muscles, and fascia. That was the big draw, how it could help break up scar tissue, muscle guarding, and all without grinding away at the joints on my wrists and hands. My curiosity drew me in and soon enough I ordered one for myself. It was not long before I fell in love with it, I have old injuries from car accidents, knee surgery, and years of being a manual therapist, so there is more than enough to work on, and seeing and feeling the results for myself is why I'm also excited to use this on my clients.
These are some of the things I love most about it.
The design is amazing, each little rounded claw (6 claws per set, and 6 sets in each blaster) works tirelessly and consistently, the way a human hand can not. That means you get equal consistent pressure by up to 54 "fingers" at once.
Due to this broad design, the pressure is spread out evenly over an area. This diminishes sensitivity. The rhythmic back and forth motion of it also helps to distract the nervous system and reduce "guarding". Guarding happens when the body forms a protective soft tissue shell around an injury. The body does this in an effort to protect but unfortunately, this can lead to decreased circulation, nerve function, reduced range of motion, and increased inflammation.
Most importantly, I love that this self-care tool empowers people to work on themselves, it teaches them how their body works and responds. It is not a passive surrender but an active rehabilitation tool.