The Therawheel is a self-myofascial release tool designed for both athletes and clinicians. It can be used by an individual on him/herself or by a clinician on his/her clients. Like many tools out there, it was designed to help keep athletes moving, but it definitely is different. Just over a foot long with a 4.5 inch wheel in the center, this little tool is surprisingly heavy. Intentionally weighted to allow for less pressure, it gets a lot deeper into the muscles than tools like the foam roller. It has a variety of functions from rolling or gliding the wheel on a muscle to pressing one of the ends (either rounded or flat) into a target area.
My Therawheel came with a Professional User Guide and a DVD. I have to admit, I was a bit overwhelmed at first. But, after looking at pages of pictures and descriptions I decided to use my husband as my guinea pig. His first comment was that I was pushing too hard. I was surprised that the weight of the tool made it so I really didn’t have to press down much at all. In fact, I felt like I was hardly doing anything. Once I figured that part out my husband was a fan of the Therawheel, as it got a lot deeper into the muscles than a typical massage.
Next, I broke out the DVD which focused on the self-myofascial release techniques. There are so many different ways to use the Therawheel and it is so different from other tools out there, that I would highly recommend watching the DVD before using it. I was surprised to find that you could lie on top of the Therawheel for certain muscles (partial weight-bearing only.) It definitely was not comfortable to have a hard plastic wheel digging into your piriformis. Even the lady on the demonstration video was grimacing. But, if you want to get deep into some of those hard to reach muscles, this is the tool you want.
My overall take on the Therawheel is that it is great for getting deep into muscles that others tools like the foam roller really can’t touch. However, I was not a fan of the hard plastic digging into my muscles in the partial weight-bearing positions. For rolling out muscles by hand, it wasn’t bad at all and it did get deeper and target better than a foam roller and other myofascial release products I have used.
You can purchase this product online at the Therawheel website for $45.00 and it comes with the much-needed DVD. The website also has videos and helpful downloads that you can check out for more details. If you are a clinician and would like to use the Therawheel on your clients/patients, add the Professional User Guide to your order for an additional $24.00. It will give you much more detailed information about using this tool on another person.