Aug 29, 2013

The Edge Mobility Band Review

(Disclosure: This was not a free item given to me for review. I paid for this on my own but I have learned a lot from the creator of this product and that information has helped me and my patients a ton so maybe that makes me biased. If that is a bias I hope I continue this bias for a long time.)

Today I will be reviewing the Edge Mobility Band which is part of the Edge Mobility System by Dr. Erson Religioso, DPT of The Manual Therapist. I have been following his blog for quite awhile now and from the start I was very intrigued by the magical blue bands that he kept using on his patients and in his videos.

I would watch his videos and read his blog posts about the increased function, mobility and decreased pain associated with using these bands as part of his treatment protocol. At the time I was unaware of the Voodoo floss bands so this was my first exposure to compression wrapping for anything other than edema prevention/reduction. I even tweeted at him back in April of this year to inquire whether a poor graduate student like myself could substitute a resistance band for his bands and get the same effect. He answered my tweet with complete honesty and told me that there was nothing magical about the Edge Mobility Bands. He stated that a simple resistance band should suffice.

While there may be nothing magical about these bands there is definitely something special about their construction and design considering that I wasted many hours trying to experiment with resistance bands instead of coughing up $24 bucks for two Edge Mobility Bands of my own. Most of those experiments led to cutting off the circulation of extremities, excessive body hair pulling, and the constant rolling and tearing of many thera-bands. It simply wasn't a feasible substitute for me but maybe it works or would work for somebody that is more coordinated, stubborn or cheap than me.

Background and Uses

So what exactly is the Edge Mobility Band? Well it is just as it sounds and is a 7.5" long by 1.5" wide band made entirely of all natural rubber. The bands are marketed to be used for a plethora of uses including:
  • Compression Wrapping of Extremities for Increasing Mobility
  • Self Spinal Mobilization Straps
  • Dynamic Stretches
Here is a little video commercial by Dr. E for the Edge Mobility Bands as well.

These bands are not for every case or injury that walks in the door of the clinic and they aren't supposed be a one-stop shop for treating the injuries that they can be used to help with. However, the bands are definitely a handy tool for your toolbox and can complement a manual therapist quite nicely. Consider these bands another version of or another way to implement instrument assisted soft-tissue mobilization (IASTM). The bands can be used in conjunction with traditional IASTM or myofascial release to prep tissues for joint mobilizations, corrective exercises and home exercise programs.

So how and why do these bands work? Well current thought is that the compression provided by the edge mobility band modulates the perception of movement or pain/tightness and allows the patients to move through the range of motion with less or no perceived threat by the central nervous system. This effect is similar to other modern manual techniques and its effects are transient.

At best, the effects may last an hour or two at best. However, a proper home exercise program or these techniques using the bands themselves should be repeated over the course of several days. The rapid changes should become the new "normal" and should stick around longer and longer after treatment.  The frequency of repeat treatment or exercises should reduce.

If the benefits don't stick eventually then there are other potential areas that need to be addressed. One easy way to see if a patient could benefit from these bands would be to perform a functional, mobility or motor control test and then repeat the same test after treatment. There is also the potential that these bands may work by stimulating the superficial fascia or skin gliding and theoretically stimulate the mechanoreceptors within.

These theories need to be tested with research because we don't really know what is happening for sure just yet. However, this isn't any different than many other traditional or modern manual therapy techniques and this doesn't mean that we shouldn't use them.  Clinical experience of patient benefit can be evidence enough for now. Infact, we may never know the true mechanism behind some of these manual techniques. We should still continue to strive to objectify the benefits and the mechanism of benefits.

Dr. E's technique varies from mine in these two videos even though I didn't know it at the time. This demonstrates an important concept on how non-specific these techniques can be but are still efficacious! Compare and contrast between the two and see for yourself!

Construction Quality

I previously mentioned that the bands are made of rubber but they don't feel like you would imagine a giant rubber band to feel like. I don't know if this is because the rubber is sealed by another material or it is due to whatever colors the bands. However, This is a good thing because the texture is smooth to the touch and doesn't grip inappropriately at body hair and skin like you imagine a rubber band or an elastic resistance band might.

The bands seemed to be made out of several band segments connected together. To the touch it feels like perhaps they were melted and sealed together. Nevertheless, the connection seems very secure and the bands themselves feel very durable on the whole. I think its going to be a long time before I wear these two Edge Mobility Bands out and need a replacement.

I have now seen videos of the Voodoo floss bands and they do not appear to be that similar to the Edge Mobility Bands in construction. The Voodoo bands seem to be much more like an elastic resistance band. The Edge Band is much thicker feeling than I anticipated but this is a good thing in my mind. I feel like this construction quality helps modulate the amount of tension or compression that I apply despite being more difficult to stretch compared to a regular resistance band. I also think this will add to the longevity and durability of the band.

Recent Patient Cases

I have been using the Edge Mobility Bands a lot in the clinic lately to see what kind of benefit I could find in many different cases. Here are just a few of the most recent cases from the last week or two that I can remember specifically. In all of these cases the patients underwent rapid reduction or resolution of their symptoms. 
  • Patellofemoral Pain in a 22 year old female runner
    • Hip IR MWM with EMB wrapped around proximal thigh
    • Tibial IR MWM with EMB wrapped around proximal and then distal lower leg
    • Repeated end-range plantar flexion with ankle wrapped in a figure-eight pattern
  • Loss of Hip IR in a 22 year old male, ex FB-player.
    • Hip IR MWM with EMB wrapped around proximal thigh
  • Iatrogenic Knee Pain in an 8 month Post-Op. ACLR - Collegiate Football Player 
    • Light IASTM with EDGEility tool to lateral thigh patterns, lateral and proximal hamstrings, and proximal calf
    • Hip IR MWM with EMB wrapped around proximal thigh
    • This case was special to me, the look in the patient's eyes and reaction after standing up and being able to walk and squat without pain was priceless. He sprinted to the weight room to do a pain-free squat workout for the first time since before his ACL rupture.
  • Recurrent Chronic Hamstring Strain in a Collegiate Football Player
    • Light IASTM with EDGEility tool to lateral thigh, and lateral/proximal hamstring patterns
    • Eccentric Hamstring exercises
  • Ulnar Nerve Irritation in a Collegiate Softball Player
    • Neurodynamics for Ulnar Nerve with EMB wrapped around proximal forearm, Instant complete resolution of symptoms (still)
  • Bilateral Plantar Fasciosis in a Collegiate Runner
    • Light IASTM with EDGEility tool to lateral thigh, anterior ankle, and posterior calf patterns
    • Tibial IR MWM with EMB wrapped around proximal and then distal lower leg
    • Hip IR MWM with EMB wrapped around proximal thigh
  • Medial Epicondylagia in a Collegiate Football Player (quarterback).
    • Medial Neurodynamics with EMB wrapped around proximal forearm
  • Unilateral Ankle Pain in a Collegiate Football Player
    • Given instructions on using EMB for self mulligan MWM for ankle dorsiflexion and tibial internal rotation before practice resulted in pain free practice sessions for the last week.
  • Increased Shoulder ROM and Decreased Pain in countless basketball and football players by using the EMB for:
    • Providing an inferior glide to proximal humerus during repeated shoulder abduction
    • Wrapping the proximal humerus with the EMB and performing repeated active and passive shoulder IR
    • Repeated Shoulder ER with EMB placing pressure on lateral upper arm resulting in increased Shoulder IR and decreased pain
  • Personally, I've been using the Edge Mobility Band to take care of a recent flare-up of low back pain. (Funny how I get flare-ups during pre-season football camp every year when I have to lift a lot of 10 gallon water coolers...) I do this by using the bands to provide a Posterior to Anterior force on the lumbar spine while doing repeated lumbar extensions while standing. I've also been using the bands before runs to work on my ankle mobility.


  • Produce rapid changes in the mobility, function and pain levels of patients
  • Athletes can use the bands on themselves
  • Help provide a better grip for techniques like the Mulligan MWM for Tibial IR
  • Lightweight and easily to take on the go
  • Have many different uses for many different body parts
  • Complement traditional manual therapy and IASTM very nicely
  • My girlfriend says they are a great color and actually work really well...(Take that as you will?)


  • People can be afraid of new things and resistant to change
  • Potential for athletes to wrap them too tight and constrict bloodflow
  • They can pinch skin or hair if you aren't careful, but nowhere near as easily as resistance bands did.
  • Having to roll up the bands can be tedious
  • Need research done on why they work (This is being worked on I believe)
  • I don't own more of them, yet.

Bottom Line

This is a review and is therefore my opinion on this product. It is my opinion so far that these bands work, that they are cheap and that they have helped many of my patients/athletes already. While you may not be able to use the Edge Mobility Bands for everything, they are definitely easy to use on others and yourself when applicable.

I see these bands as a having a great potential benefit for athletes/patients/runners/etc because of their ease of use. I could instruct an athlete on how to use one of these bands for something and they would be able to use them easily on their own. This could benefit patient outcomes by increasing home exercise program compliance and would be great for injury prevention in athletes that need mobility work prior to training and conditioning.

While there is isn't a lot of research on such products as the Edge Mobility Band we do know that there are people using them and finding a lot of benefit. There is research in progress on the why and what but that doesn't mean we should wait to experiment on our own.  If people are willing to spend $2000-$3000 dollars for IASTM instruments or $20-$100 on foam rollers and other self-myofascial tools then there is no reason somebody should be afraid to cough up $24 bucks for a pair of these bands.

I approached this purchase with an open mind and gave them a fair shot. I wasn't disappointed and I am going to continue using these bands with my patients and on myself. I don't think you will be disappointed either when you get your own Edge Mobility Bands. They are available on The Edge Mobility System Website or from too, which has free shipping on all orders! I've included a link below!


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