It looks like a cross between a Roller Blade and some sort of medieval torture device, but the R8 is actually an award-winning tissue massager that takes the work out of recovery.

Massage tools used for post-workout recovery — be it a traditional foam roller, a stick or any other device — are built on the notion that they will help manipulate trigger points, increase blood flow, help flush out lactic acid and, in the process, reduce recovery time and prevent injury. The R8 accomplishes all of the above, with a twist. By using two sets of smooth-rolling polyurethane wheels and tension provided by torsion springs and resistance arms, the device allows you to stand, sit or lie down and simply roll over the parts of your body that need attention. (No more rolling on the floor.)

The R8 self-adjusts for different body parts and sizes, whether IT-bands, quads, hamstrings, calves, arms, whatever, allowing you full control to target hard-to-reach spots and add or reduce pressure as needed. And because of its compact size — it measures 11.5” x 9.5” and weighs 2.5 lbs. — it’s easy to travel with and take to workouts. It even comes with a handy carrying bag.

The only negative I found is that some of the bearings in the resistance arms loosen up after continued use of the R8 and need to be re-tightened, which you can do with a set of allen wrenches and pliers. It’s a small price to pay for a tool that will revolutionize the way you approach recovery.

I got my R8 at Maplewood Bicycle, but you can also order online.

ROLL Recovery R8; MSRP: $119,

Author: Shalini Kovach is a competitive ultra runner and lead organizer of Terrain Trail Runners