Have you ever used a foam roller?
Firstly, if you are unsure of what a foam roller is, it is a cylinder piece of foam anywhere from 50-100cm in length. Majority of them are smooth and some can be found with ridges all over it for a deeper roll.
The technical name for foam rolling is Self myofascial release, and you can usually find these at most gyms in the stretching areas.
Foam rolling should be something you do every day, just like brushing your teeth.
Just like stretching, foam rolling can be integral to injury prevention, increasing blood flow, decreasing soft-tissue density and relaxing tight muscles.
It can also really help to increase flexibility and can be helpful pre- and post-workout.
If you are someone who plays sports like tennis, swimming, golf, running and cycling, foam rolling can really help to improve range of motion.
When kneading the muscles and fascia with a roller, it takes pressure off the knee and hip, which allows freedom of movement and reduces the risk of injury.
When to Foam Roll: If you are seeking to improve your performance in your training, rolling before your workout is key.
If you want to prevent muscle soreness to some extent, using it as apart of your cool down is a great choice also.
Outside of your training, if you are someone who has an office job and is sitting down at a computer all day, doing some back foam rolling can help to open up the chest and help with the rounding and tightness of the chest that we tend to get from this type of job.
How To Use them: If you are new to foam rolling, just start slow, take it easy and don’t do anything that hurts, you could end up making things worse.
Spend around 30-60 seconds on each muscle or area. Roll slowly and when you hit those more tender spots, really focus on them and breath through those spots.
Using around 10 minutes is a good amount of time to roll the body.
Remember, if you are still insure how to use them, ask one of the trainers at your gym to give you a run through on how to use them.