Treat yourself using a tennis ball

Treat yourself using a tennis ball

Often I advise my patients to use a tennis ball to help with aches and pain. I even keep a supply of balls for patients to purchase.

It is obviously important to see a health professional who can help to correctly diagnose a problem, before self treating. If the problem is muscular and you respond well to deep massage, then a tennis ball may well be able to offer some relief between treatments.

  • For lower back pain try lying on a tennis ball and rolling on it.
  • For upper back and shoulder pain – put a tennis ball in a long sock and swing it over your shoulder, lean against a wall and roll. Hold onto the end of the sock to adjust the height level of the tennis ball down your back.
  • For buttock pain try sitting, or lying, on the tennis ball and rolling.
  • For neck pain and related headaches; place two tennis balls in a sock and knot the end of the sock. Lie on the floor with the tennis balls on the neck muscles, at the base of the skull.


Apply pressure by leaning on the tennis ball or use movement to provide a deep massage. Do this for 5-10 minutes. Using the tennis ball in this way works on the principles of myofascial release, stimulating the blood supply to increase the levels of nutrients and oxygen to the area. The massaging effect can also release endorphins which are the body’s natural painkillers.

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