You know that feeling after an extremely long day at work when all the adrenaline has worn off and you’re left terribly sore and tired, knots on your shoulders and the back of your legs pulsing after an afternoon of hustling while wearing killer pumps.
A massage would be great right about now, but you remember you have to get home soon because you have to thaw the chicken for dinner. So you drag your aching muscles home and settle for massaging your own feet as soon as you hit the couch.
Let’s face it, there’s bound to be more days like this. But you can level up your self-massage experience by taking note of these 7 soothing self-massage tricks:
- Relieve tension
Hustlers like the working mom that you are, almost always end the day with sore feet. One way to relieve this is to place a tennis ball on the arch of your foot and let a little bit of your weight sit on the ball. Move your foot around slowly to target painful points. You can also use tennis balls to reach the space between your shoulder blades or in your lower back, that otherwise would have been tough to reach with your hands.
- Relax your neck
Make it a habit to periodically allow your neck to relax after a long time of hunching over your desk. To do this, clasp your hands together behind your neck, and press the bottom of your palms to each side of your neck. Do this with slow upward and downward movements. Afterwards, press into the muscle along the left side of your neck just under your skull base using your right-hand fingers. Tilt your head to the left, then rub downward and work your way to your shoulder. You may repeat this set three times before switching sides.
- Hammer kinks
Gently thump your sore muscles from top to bottom with your fists, starting with your legs and arms. Doing this in the morning will wake you up, while doing it in the evening will beat out tension and stress, inducing a sense of calm.
- Massage calves
Walking in heels all day is a torture we willingly bring upon ourselves. It can, however, shorten your calf muscles over time. To relieve this: Sit on a chair with your feet flat on the floor and place your thumb over your Achilles tendon. Massage your way up your calf until you reach your knee. Repeat these steps on your other leg.
- Belly Rub
You can stimulate digestion by giving yourself a belly rub after a meal. Rub your abdomen in clockwise circular motions, as this is the same way your food moves through your gut.
Massaging your muscles after a workout can speed up recovery for your muscle cells. Using your palm or fist, give yourself a good rubdown toward your heart after a sweat session.
- Heat Therapy
Spending the whole day staring at a screen can strain your eyes, but a little heat can go a long way to relax them. Rub your hands together quickly until they heat up, then cup one hand over each eye to let the warmth soothe your tired eyes.
Head over to Reader Digest’s original article here to see 10 more self-massage tricks you can take home and try yourself.
What new self-massage trick did you learn today? Let us know in the comments below!