Everyone in the office knows I’m training for my first marathon because I’m regularly complaining about new aches and pains that arise after long runs. That’s why I am legitimately excited when a new therapy device arrives at the office. Admittedly, some of them look a bit weird. But in the name of post-run recovery, who cares?
I have enough equipment in my tiny Brooklyn apartment to eliminate the need to ever visit a physical therapist’s office. But what I can’t do as well as a licensed therapist is an ice wrap. That’s why I was grateful to discover GoFit’s Polar Roller.
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Easy to Use
Before I discovered the Polar Roller, I used a makeshift ice pack, which was problematic because the ice cubes would move around and melt, and the bag would eventually leak. GoFit’s Polar Roller spares me from constantly shifting my pack—and mildew on my rug.
The tool is a 6-inch long handheld roller with a detachable rubber grip, so you can just pop off the metal ball and place it in the freezer. GoFit recommends you freeze the ball for two hours minimum but I’ve found an hour does the trick. The ball stays cool longer than an ice pack, and I store it in the freezer since it doesn’t take up much space, and it’s ready for me whenever I need it.
GoFit’s polar lineup includes several tools to choose from besides the Polar Roller. The Massage Bar, for example, is a stick with a stainless steel tube center that gets the job done by simultaneously kneading and icing, but it’s quite heavy and not easily packable. Another option is the Roll-On, which is a small handheld with a rubber grip around a stainless steel ball, similar to the Polar Roller. It’s convenient and easy to use but can cause pinching on bare skin. This is why the small portable, no-pinch Polar Roller is a staff favorite.
Though the roller ball does get a bit frosty after freezer removal, there’s less wet than a bag of ice and no leakage. I use it directly on my skin and there is no irritation. Even though it leaves a little bit of water residue when massaged over clothing, it doesn’t cause total saturation.
Because you determine how much or how little pressure to apply, the roller is great for sensitive areas, and you’re essentially icing and massaging at the same time. As runners, our goal is usually to shave off a few seconds. The fact that the roller does double-duty makes it the ultimate time-saver when it comes to recovery.
Amy Wolff is the photo director of Popular Mechanics, Bicycling, and Runner’s World, overseeing visual content for print and digital. Though her first love is the visual image, she’s a dedicated runner, loves the bike and as a new homeowner, learning new skills everyday.