After hours upon hours of training your muscles are bound to become fatigued, tight and sore. A regular massage is always a great thing but we don’t always have the time or funds to continuously have massage treatment. So a great solution to this issue is to invest in a Foam Roller.
So what is a Foam Roller? A Foam Roller is a long cylinder shaped piece of firm foam, which can be used to perform self-massage (myofascial release) generally using body weight (it is also great for stretching and Pilates exercises too).
Benefits of using a Foam Roller include, muscle relaxation, increased muscular blood flow to assist in recovery/healing, its low cost, you can use it anytime, anywhere, assists in reducing chance of injury, reduces muscle imbalances, barely takes up any space and can assist in increasing flexibility and stability.
When it comes to using the Foam Roller for myofascial release the most common method is to place the Foam Roller underneath a specific muscle or muscle group. Then by using your body weight to apply pressure, roll along the muscle or muscle group. If a tender spot is found you can apply pressure to the tender area for about 30 to 60 seconds. It is recommended that using the Foam Roller a little and often is the most effective. For example 10mins, 4 times per week is a great routine to get into.
Always keep in mind that foam rolling can be painful and should always be done slowly and gently. Remember, foam rolling is an adjunct to your training and recovery and should not be used in place of Physiotherapy/Osteopathy or your healthcare professional, when you are injured, or if you don’t know what you are doing.
If you’re not sure how to use a foam roller, have a chat with your healthcare professional who will be able to show you how and give you tips on best using your Foam Roller.
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