What You Need to Know Before Buying a PSO-Spine Back Massage Tool
If you’ve been struggling with nagging back issues and immobility, you’re not alone. The back and spine are two consistent problem areas for many athletes. The PSO-Spine is a unique solution custom-tailored to solve a unique problem – releasing the back’s complex and crucial muscle systems surrounding and supporting the spine.
This article covers everything you need to know about the importance of a healthy functioning back and spine for your athletic ability. And what the PSO-Spine is, how it works, and how to use it.
Mobility Athlete is reader-supported. So if you use any of the links in our articles to add training and recovery tools to your gym bag, we can get a small commission (at no additional cost to you.) So if you appreciate the work we do and the information we provide in articles like this, it helps us keep the lights on. Thanks for your support!
Importance of Healthy Back Muscles and Spinal Mobility for Athletes
The spine and muscles of the back carry a heavy load for nearly every athletic movement. Every time you twist, bend, or need to perform under load, your spine and back play a crucial role in making it happen.
Every sport that involves some form of rotation requires adequate thoracic mobility for optimal performance. From quick lateral movements in team sports to swinging a baseball bat or throwing a ball, one misstep or limitation in your back’s mobility can lead to decreased performance on the field, or worse, injury.
Keeping your back healthy means maintaining adequate strength and range of motion of the spine and the muscles and tendons that move and support the spine.
Aside from a well-balanced back training regimen, when it comes to maintaining mobility and range of motion, athletes may incorporate a self-myofascial or trigger point release practice into their daily routine.
However, targeting the intricate muscles and tendons surrounding the spine comes with unique challenges you don’t encounter with more accessible muscle groups throughout the body.
The Challenge of Releasing the Back With Traditional Trigger Point Release
Trigger point and self-myofascial release is a go-to strategy for athletes to break up fascia limiting range of motion, improve circulation and recovery, and restore the balance of muscle tension throughout the body.
But when it comes to the muscles and tendons of the back, especially those surrounding the spine, traditional self-massage tools don’t quite hit the right spots to provide adequate release.
Typically, releasing tension and getting the benefits of myofascial release in the back meant making an appointment with a massage therapist for a deep tissue massage. While getting a massage from a certified massage therapist is an excellent solution, the purpose of self-massage is to have the ability to integrate its practice regularly to maximize the benefits through consistency. (Not to mention the time and cost of making a trip to the massage therapist every day.)
Just like grabbing the massage gun or foam roller to self-massage easier-to-reach muscles like the legs and arms, athletes also needed to find an accessible way to target the back with myofascial and trigger point release.
This is why PSO-Rite expanded its product offering to include the PSO-Spine.
PSO-Rite is no stranger to developing products that target hard-to-reach muscles and tendons of the body. Initially, they made their mark in the fitness industry with their renowned psoas release tool. The psoas is also notoriously difficult to reach with self-massage. And their simple yet effective tool has been so impactful for releasing the psoas that it is a recurring product brought up on major podcasts like The Joe Rogan Experience.
The PSO-Spine follows the same formula as the PSO-Rite psoas release tool, creating a product that specifically addresses releasing hard-to-reach parts of the body.
But for the PSO-Spine, this meant creating a tool that effectively supplies sustained pressure to the muscles and tendons of the back surrounding the spine.
How the PSO-Spine Works
The muscles of the spine are a complex series of muscles that have origin and insertion points unique to any other muscle group in the body – making them much more challenging to target with traditional massage and trigger-point release devices. But just like any other muscle group in the body, they are susceptible to becoming tight and stiff, impeding range of motion and causing nagging pains.
The SPO-Spine has a five peak design that mimics the hands of a massage therapist, and its stable base allows you to use gravity to apply sustained pressure from the peaks to the muscles to the left and right of the spine.
It allows you to help keep your nerves and spinal muscles healthy through trigger point release. Ultimately helping you manage and improve the proper function of the back muscles.
How to Use the PSO-Spine
Medical Disclaimer: You should always consult with your doctor before using the PSO-Spine (or any new fitness protocol), especially if you suspect that you have an injury.
Here are some basic tips and instructions for using your PSO-Spine:
- While seated on the ground or mat with the Pso-Spine placed vertically behind you, use your hands and forearms to gently lower yourself into down above the device.
- While lowering yourself into position, ensure that the PSO-Spine’s peaks are touching the spinal muscles to the left and right of the spine.
- Once you lay back, get a feel for the different pressure sensations and gauge your current pain tolerance.
- Breathing deeply allows you to manipulate the pressure and location of the peaks on the muscles by expanding/contracting the ribcage and the position of the surrounding muscles.
- You can also manipulate the pressure by extending one leg and rotating your body deeper onto one side. Then repeat for the opposing side of the body.
- It is crucial to remember, so we’ll give this its own step: When you are massaging your spinal muscles to keep the peaks on the muscle, NOT on the bone of the spine.
PSO-Rite vs. PSO-Spine for Your Back
Numerous user reviews have claimed that you can accomplish a similar release of the muscles along the spine using the PSO-Rite Psoas Release device. So it is worth briefly covering the nuances of its effectiveness for this purpose.
For advanced users who are well in tune with their bodies, this could be true. However, just like the PSO-Rite is specifically engineered to target the psoas, the PSO-Spine is specifically engineered to target the muscles along the spine.
The first concern would be the more considerable depth of the peaks on the PSO-Rite vs. the PSO-Spine. Secondly, the PSO-Spine’s five peaks distribute the downward force evenly along its horizontal axis. Meaning, if you’re not careful, you could increase your chance of injury from the additional depth and concentration of pressure.
As a general rule, it is always a better idea to use a device for its intended purposes to avoid injury from improper use and achieve superior results from the product. In this case, that would imply using the PSO-Rite for the psoas and the PSO-Spine for the muscles surrounding the spine.
Final Thoughts and Review:
A healthy back has significant implications for both your athletic performance and general well-being alike. Having the right tools at your disposal to help release your back and improve its health and function is a significant piece of the puzzle on your journey to a healthier back and spine.
Like anything else in life, it’s essential to have the right tools for the task you’re trying to accomplish. The PSO-Spine is a purpose-built tool for achieving self-massage and release of muscle groups that are challenging to get to with the devices you already have in your gym bag.
If you appreciate the work we do consolidating everything you need to know about mobility training and recovery tools and protocols, don’t forget to subscribe to the Mobility Athlete newsletter! You can get tips and tools delivered directly to your inbox and stay up to date with the latest developments here at Mobility Athlete.
Subscribe to the Mobility Athlete newsletter!