Palm Rolling Dreadlocks
Palm rolling is used to help the knots in dreads tighten and compress. It also helps get short loose hair on the surface of the dread locked in. It works much better than "twisting" around and around for dreads that have been started by backcombing. To palm roll you simply grab the dread between the base of your palms and rub it back and forth vigorously. It's a bit like rolling Play-Doh between your palms to make it long and skinny. Compress the dread between your palms pretty hard as you roll it.
I've heard some people, Ryan Gaston for one, has palm rolled so hard and fast that he smelled burring hair. That's um...too hard =] I didn't even know that was possible. (He may have also been leaning against a toaster? =] )You just want to give it a fair amount of pressure and roll the dread medium fast. If you're arms tire almost instantly you're probably using too much pressure. Either that our you're a bit of a wuss. =]
Palm rolling works well anytime but the best time to palm roll when you have dread wax in the dreads. A good dread wax will allow the knots to compress and tighten as you palmroll. They will tighten down more and more until they are as tight as the hair will permit them to get. Normally they knots would start loosening as soon as you stop palmrolling but the wax will help the knots hold this progress until you palm roll the dread again. In between palmrolling sessions, the hair in the knots will be getting used to being compressed. The same way that hair in a braid gets used to being in a braid after a day or so. Once the hair has gotten used to it's position it can compress even tighter next time.
Because of the way Palmrolling and dread wax work together I recommend trying to palm roll each of your dreads for 30 seconds, every day you have wax in them. Of course this isn't always possible but give it a shot as often as you can. Maybe split it up and do the front in the morning and the back in the evening. After the first month you'll switch over to the A-B maintenance routine so you'll only have wax in them every other week. In other words it's only the first month where you really want to palmroll them each for 30 seconds a day.
Next up well talk about Finger Rolling!