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Self-Recovery Tools – Part 3 – Physio Knuckles


There are many different types of tools that an individual can use as a self-massage recovery tool. Self-recovery is extremely important to aid in advancing an athlete’s performance ability.

When muscles are used in everyday life and exercise, the connective tissue within the muscles and joints becomes fatigued and tight. This leads to decreased circulation, decreased nutrient uptake, and can become painful and uncomfortable. If muscles and soft tissue are not properly addressed, it can lead to trigger points or muscular ‘knots’ which can become extremely painful and restrict range of motion. A spikey ball allows the user to self-massage in the comfort of their own home with the ability to adjust pressure as needed.


Physio Knuckle

What is it?

A ‘Physio Knuckle’, also known as, ‘Pocket Physio’ is a self-massage, trigger point recovery tool that has been designed by physiotherapists and other health care professionals as a small, simple, effective, and inexpensive tool that can aid in the reduction on muscle tension and pain. The tool is a hard hoof-shaped tool) made of rubber that comes to a rounded point that can be used in a similar way to a therapist’s thumb or elbow, making it ideal to be used in between treatments to manage specific tightness in muscles. The Physio Knuckle is an ideal self-recovery tool for athletes, office workers, labourers and anyone that suffers from general tightness due to everyday life.


How is it used?

The Physio Knuckle or Pocket Physio was designed to be used as a self-managed trigger point therapy aid for all muscle groups. The large base coming to a soft point is extremely useful for accurate placement and direct pressure management for muscular tightness.

The pressure applied to the trigger point can be adjusted by the individual user by adjusting positioning of the body and tool, allowing for the individual to adjust the pressure depending on their pain tolerance and needs.

Physio Knuckles are extremely effective in releasing the myofascial trigger points of muscles that cause pain and tension. Myofascial trigger points are the ‘knots’ and tight areas within the muscles that form due to lactic acid/chemical build up post-exercise. These trigger points are very localised within the muscles connective tissue and are overly sensitive due to the compressed and condensed tissue. Compression on trigger points can refer pain to various areas of the body and when left untreated can lead to, prolonged joint pain, headaches, neck pain, lower back pain, tennis elbow and carpal tunnel syndrome.

The Physio Knuckle or Pocket Physio is an ideal self-recovery tool to use for deep muscle release in muscles such as the Piriformis, Hip Flexors, Iliotibial Band, Quadratus Lumborum and Glutes. The tool is also great to relieve tension in the head and neck that can cause tension headaches and generalised head and neck pain.

Please Note – Initially tense muscles will resist the treatment and it may cause increased localised pain and discomfort until the muscle begins to relax. However, this discomfort does indicate that you have correctly placed the tool.



  1.  Locate trigger point or tense, knotted area of the muscle
  2. Place the point of the physio knuckle on the affected/tense area
  3.  Apply the desired amount of pressure to the area by adjusting your body position
  4. Hold the pressure for 30-60 seconds, adjust pressure if needed
  5. Repeat in the same area and around the area until you feel the muscle begin to release
  6. Repeat this process 1-3 times a day to see the best results

Please note – using a Physio Knuckle may be slightly painful due to the tightness and tenderness in the soft tissue.

When using the Physio Knuckle remember to breathe naturally, consult with your physiotherapist, do not use the Physio Knuckle if you have a new injury or inflammation, avoid bony areas, and if you have any pain or complications please consult a health care professional.


Possible Benefits:

  • Relieve aches and pain
  • Increase mobility
  • Decreases muscular tension
  • Maintain flexibility and mobility
  • Maintain benefits of physiotherapy, massage, and other allied health professional treatments for longer periods of time
  • No hands-on treatment needed
  • Restore motion to joints post-injury
  • Reduces muscle spasms known to cause headaches, neck and lower back pain
  • Decrease recovery time
  • Improve posture


Written and published By Rose Mercieca 23/10/2020

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