Most of us spend 8 hours of our day performing a particular job. Whether this involves sitting in front of a computer, climbing a ladder, driving, or standing, specific muscles are being "turned on" while their agonists get "shut off". This is a process that happens constantly throughout the body. An example would be when we contract our bicep, the tricep(antagonist) has to relax and lengthen in order for the bicep muscle to shorten. This is called Reciprical Inhibition.
The computer programmer who sits at a desk typing all day developes tight, shortened pectoral, shoulder and upper trap muscles and stretched weakened rhomboids, mid and lower trap muscles almost inevitably causing pain, weakness, numbness, and a possible loss of fine motor skills due to nerve entrapment.
Although many people feel massage treatments are a luxury, in my opinion, corrective muscle therapy is essential for everyone in minimizing pain and increasing productivity. It is necessary to address both the tight shortened muscles as well as the essentrically stretched muscles. With proper use, self treatment tools can be an effective, added benefit to regular massage treatments.
The foam roller has been one of my favorite tools that I use on a regular basis. It has worked wonders on the tight, larger, postural muscles of my back that are in chronic contraction for long periods at a time with my profession.
Our bodies have allowed us to perform our jobs day after day, earning an income and assuring our demands are met. It is our job to take care of them by listening to their warning signs (pain), and addressing the issue. Also giving them the proper nutrition, rest, and exercise. So stop procrastinating and INVEST IN YOUR HEALTH today!