Whether you’re training for sports, enjoy massages, or simply have sore muscles, a foam roller may be a worthwhile investment. These compressed foam cylinder tubes are lightweight and available in a variety of diameters and stiffness levels. Notably, they can be used as a form of self-myofascial release (SMR), which is intended to assist in the relaxation of particular tissues.

Foam rollers are typically used prior to or following exercise. They can help alleviate muscle tension, pain, and inflammation, as well as improve range of motion. Below, we’ve compiled a list of the top foam rollers available:

 

TriggerPoint CORE Multi-Density Solid

Tech Reviews - TriggerPoint CORE - Tech News

  • Density: Moderately Firm
  • Texture: Various (“GRID”)
  • Length: 12 inches (other options available)
  • Diameter: 4 inches
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Using the TriggerPoint Core is like paying for a massage therapist at a fraction of the cost. Constructed of EVA foam for a moderate level of firmness with some give, the TriggerPoint Core’s proprietary GRID texture distributes pressure evenly over your body’s tight muscles – all for $20.

The GRID pattern is a significant advantage for this small but powerful roller. The high and sturdy squares that run through the Core’s center and sides are ideal for dense connective tissues. I used these parts to untangle difficult knots in my calves, and the tension was ideal. Additionally, the roller has tubular grooved parts that simulate the grasp of extended fingers and long, flat sections that simulate the palm of a hand.

The compact, manageable size of the TriggerPoint is both an advantage and a disadvantage. With a length of 12 inches and a diameter of 4 inches, it fits effortlessly into any gym bag or backpack. It’s really compact and takes up little space. However, I occasionally felt the size to be too small to effectively target certain larger areas of my body. Rolling both hamstrings and quadriceps at the same time would be exceedingly tough unless you have an incredibly tiny frame. If you’re searching for something a little longer, TriggerPoint offers its Core roller in both 18- and 36-inch lengths.

 

Hyperice Vyper 2.0

Tech Reviews - Hyperice Vyper 2.0 - Tech News

  • Density: Extra Firm
  • Texture: Grooved
  • Length: 11.61 inches
  • Diameter: 5.31 inches
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Boost the performance of your foam rolling regimen with the Hyperice Vyper 2.0. Select from three vibration settings through a side switch, all of which are designed to improve mobility, flexibility, and circulation.

By incorporating a vibrating roller into your warm-up routine, you may increase blood flow, which results in a warmer muscle prior to action. However, vibrating foam rollers can help alleviate some of the pain associated with foam rolling, which is beneficial when working on tense muscle groups. This was the case when I used the Vyper on my quadriceps and glutes (buttocks), two places that often cause me discomfort. The additional vibration had a more direct effect on the knots in those tissues, while also increasing muscle relaxation.

The Hyperice Vyper is one of the more expensive rollers on our list due to its hardware. It features a powerful, high-intensity vibrating core and a lithium-ion rechargeable battery. Due to the vibrating core, it is also significantly noisier than a standard roller. 

The Vyper is made of the highest quality EPP foam and can survive a great deal of use. While it is not as tiny or portable as the TriggerPoint, it is still small enough to carry in a gym bag or large tote bag. Furthermore, because the lithium battery is TSA-approved, you may pack the Vyper in your carry-on to alleviate any post-flight stiffness.

While the Hyperice Vyper is not the cheapest option, if you’re looking for the Macbook of foam rollers, it’s well worth the investment.

 

GoFit Foam Roller

Tech Reviews - GoFit Foam Roller - Tech News

  • Density: Mildly Firm
  • Texture: Smooth
  • Length: 36 inches (other options available)
  • Diameter: 6 inches
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The GoFit Foam Roller is an excellent entry-level roller for beginners. With a solid enough density to soothe hyperactive muscles but not so firm that a first-time user is intimidated, utilizing the GoFit is a great method to begin a regular SMR practice.

The GoFit is made of PE foam, which is ideal for anyone who has never rolled before. It’s softer than other rollers, giving untrained muscles a better chance to adjust to the method. Despite its milder feel, this roller can nevertheless provide some relief to the seasoned roller. I was able to utilize the GoFit to release long-standing tension in my legs. GoFit also contains a comprehensive training booklet that details how to target certain regions of the back, hips, and legs, which is a huge benefit for beginners.

The disadvantage of the GoFit’s PE foam design is its inability to withstand repeated use. Rollers composed of PE foam are prone to distort over time, becoming thinner and more worn. Given the 36-inch length of the GoFit we tested, you can attempt to avoid this result by utilizing different portions of the roller during each session.

If you’ve been considering giving foam rolling a try, the GoFit Foam Roller is an excellent choice.

 

Lululemon Double Roller

Tech Reviews - Lululemon Double Roller - Tech News

  • Density: Moderately Firm/Firm
  • Texture: Grooved/Deep Waves
  • Length: 20.5 inches (other options available)
  • Diameter: 5 inches
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The Lululemon Double Roller is a highly versatile foam roller. Its interlocking design features a gentler external roller that applies proper pressure to tired muscles in the arms and legs and a denser inside roller that digs into more difficult-to-treat areas in the back.

While there are numerous foam rollers that may be used on the thicker tissues of the hips and lower body, it’s uncommon to find a fantastic upper body roller. That is precisely where the slightly grooved, somewhat dense outer roller shines.

The inner roller’s wavy texture is ideal for targeting tight muscles in the back, but it’s also good for addressing tense places in the quadriceps and hamstrings. I even used it to soothe the bottoms of my feet following a long run. The inner roller is significantly stiffer and has a deeper, more solid texture than the outside roller, making it slightly more intense for some.

When you’re looking for a single roller (or two) to address all of your body’s trigger points, the Lululemon Double Roller is a great choice.

 

Rumble Roller

Tech Reviews - Rumble Roller - Tech News

  • Density: Extra Firm (other options available)
  • Texture: Rigid Bumps
  • Length: 22 inches (other options available)
  • Diameter: 5.5 inches
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The Rumble Roller is not recommended for beginners. The Rumble Roller has extra firm density and bumpy texture that simulate heavy thumb pressure, so you can target even the most difficult trigger spots and significantly enhance mobility.

Your first time using the Rumble Roller will be painful no matter how many times you’ve used a foam roller before. It will likely hurt even more the second, third, and thirtieth time you use it. The good benefits, on the other hand, are immediate. My hips felt heated and my range of motion expanded after 30 seconds of rolling my excessively tight muscles. And for all the discomfort you face on the Rumble Roller, you may notice that many of the aches you began with have vanished once you’re off of it. The 22-inch length was ideal for getting into all of my extremely small spaces, and the EVA/polyolefin foam structure will not degrade with time or with use.

The Rumble Roller should not be your first or only foam roller. However, when used properly, this roller can work wonders.   This is not a foam roller for the uninitiated. However, if you have a strenuous training regimen and really tight muscles that a basic foam roller cannot reach, the Rumble Roller may be the right fit for you.

 

RAD Helix

Tech Reviews - RAD Roller - Tech News

  • Density: Moderately firm
  • Texture: Smooth/Lightly Grooved/tapered
  • Length: 12.5 inches
  • Diameter: 3 inches
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With a design inspired by DNA strands, the RAD Helix stands out from some of our other options. Apart from its aesthetic appeal, its unique structure enables targeted compression of often overworked muscles in the lower body without exerting pressure on bones or other sensitive areas.

As anyone will attest after a squat day or a long run, the legs and hips can become extremely stiff. While we’re discussing quads, hamstrings, and calves, let’s not forget about the muscles that surround our shins. That is where the Helix excels. The Helix’s tapered form enables you to address muscular tightness without pressing painfully against the shinbone.  Additionally, the Helix is excellent for use on the hips and upper leg. 

The Helix is a versatile roller that can be used on any part of the body, but because of its unique features, it is an excellent foam roller for your hips and legs.

 

Theragun Wave Roller

Tech Reviews - Theragun Wave Roller - Tech News

  • Density: Extra firm
  • Texture: Smooth/Slightly tapered
  • Length: 12 inches
  • Diameter: 5.1 inches
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If you are unfamiliar with foam rolling, the Theragun Wave roller is an excellent recovery item to keep in your kit bag. It connects through Bluetooth to your phone and may be used in conjunction with the Therabody app to create customized foam rolling regimens depending on your specific needs. The roller features five distinct vibration levels and wave grooves that impart the perfect amount of pressure to fatigued muscles. The Theragun Wave is included with a charger and a travel pouch, allowing you to transport your roller safely.

The disadvantages here are consistent with those of other vibrating foam rollers – they are noisier than a standard foam roller, and the Theragun Wave is unmistakably on the noisier end of the scale. While this may not bother many users, if you’re concerned about attracting attention in the gym or disturbing your household early in the morning or late at night, this may be an issue. Additionally, you must remember to charge your roller. This one has a fairly respectable 180-minute battery life, but it’s still another thing to worry about.

 

Chirp Wheel+

Tech Reviews - Chirp Wheel - Tech News

  • Density: Moderately firm (other options available)
  • Texture: Smooth/tapered
  • Diameter: 10 inches (other options available)
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While the back is a frequent part of the body that is tight and overworked, using a standard roller on the area is generally not recommended due to the risk of putting undue pressure on the spine. That is where the Chirp Wheel+ enters the picture.

The Chirp’s innovative “spinal canal” cushions your backbone’s sensitive discs and vertebrae while providing pressure in all the correct spots. I tested the ten-inch Wheel+, which provided a reasonable amount of tension, and it felt fantastic. As I sat on it, I instantly felt a sense of relief in my lumbar (lower) spine, which continued as the wheel rolled up to my shoulders. And, because the solid core of the wheel can handle up to 500 pounds, I felt comfortable letting it support my entire body weight.

The Wheel+ is fantastic for the back, but its design and diameter make it difficult to use on other sections of the body. Rolling out my glutes, hamstrings, and calves was not impossible, but it did not feel as effective or as powerful as using some of the more standard foam rollers we selected. However, the Chirp Wheel+ can offer your back muscles some much-needed care safely and effectively.

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