No, this isn’t the stuff for your teeth. Muscle flossing (also known as Voodoo Floss because of the brand Voodoo that makes them) is an awesome tool for recovery. The purpose of the floss, and why many athletes keep one in their gym bag, is to (1) restore range of motion to joints and (2) separate injured tissue.
You know that feeling when you’re so sore the next day that it hurts? I’m talking about when you can’t extend your arm or walk down the steps… Let me share with you a text I received yesterday:
“I’ve been experiencing extreme discomfort in my shoulders and arms. It’s been so bad I’ve hardly been able to lift my arms over my head or even reach behind me to get things out of my back pockets. I guess I really overdid it…”
Ever happen to you? In these situations, voodoo floss should be your companion.
Because “flossing” helps with soreness, it really isn’t that much different than a foam roller, lacrosse ball, or even a mobility stick. I personally prefer the mobility stick over any of the others, but will use the voodoo floss from time to time. Some of our coaches has gotten into the habit of using it (almost) every day. Because it’s so effective, we keep at least one hanging near the bands at every RxFIT gym.
How Does Voodoo Floss Work?
Voodoo Floss is typically wrapped around the muscles before and after the joint (usually the knee, elbow, or shoulder). If my legs are sore, I’m going to start wrapping the upper-part of my calf, cover my knee, and finish at my hamstrings/quads.
Once the floss is secured, do 2-minutes worth of exercise that uses that joint. If it’s your leg, do some squats. If it’s your arm, do push-ups.
The theory behind the floss is that blood flow is restricted to the sore area. Then, once you take off the floss, a rush of “good” blood floods the injured area thus washing out the bad stuff. This is obviously a simplistic overview of what is happening, but the theory suggests a quicker recovery.
Try out all the tools: muscle flossing, foam rolling, lacrosse balls, and mobility sticks. Find the one you like the most, and then keep it in your gym bag. You’ll use this tool as “pre-hab” before some sessions.
Above all else, just show up. Your coach will help you when you need it.