I just got a new massage tool called the R8 Roller. I highly recommend it. http://www.rollrecovery.com/r8/
Over the years I’ve spent (largely wasted) a small fortune on self-massage tools and kept coming back to my good old lacrosse balls. However, this thing is the real deal. If you look at their website, it’s pretty self explanatory as to how it works. What I will tell you that you can’t get from the pictures and video is that the tension springs in this thing apply quite a lot of pressure. It pretty much clamps down like a vise. This device overcomes the primary drawback of all other self-massage tools: the need to apply mechanical pressure yourself or rely on gravity (which can often be a sledgehammer approach). So you’re not robbing Peter to pay Paul.
It was obviously designed with runners in mind and is best suited for appendicular massage (legs and arms), but I did manage to work it up to my glutes/hip flexors and low back (start at the leg and roll it up, you won’t be strong enough to open it wide enough to clamp directly over your hips). I’ve had this thing for about 30 min, so I obviously can’t speak to its durability, but I will definitely put that to the test. It seems pretty sturdy. Even if I had to replace it in a year, I think it would be a good buy (and my next order would be a 10 pack).
Nothing can replace a set of trained hands working on you, but this is the best thing I’ve seen that can fill the gaps between massage sessions for those of us who are not fortunate enough to have someone work on us every day.