Foam rolling is an important part of recovery. It is a form of self massage which uses the body’s own weight to provide pressure for massage. Movement along the foam roller is provided by the arms pushing the body back and forth. Foam rolling aims to reduce tension and tightness of the muscles and the fascia which sits between the muscles.
How to foam roll?
During foam rolling, the majority of weight should be put through the arms at first. Then keeping the muscles relaxed, move the body back and forward on the foam roller. As this gets comfortable, slowly put more weight through the muscles onto the foam roller. However, this should not go to the point of pain
Types of foam roller
The most common type of foam roller is a cylinder shape made with compressed foam, which rolls back and forward along the muscles with momentum. The cylinder foam roller is best for the larger muscle groups such as the quadriceps and hamstrings and calves. A small ball, such as a cricket ball, could also be used for self-massage. This would be best for smaller muscle groups such as the glutes and shoulder and could also be used for calves.
A hand roller could also be used. The benefits of a hand roller are that you can provide as much pressure through the roller as you want, therefore making it safer and easier to use.
Benefits of foam rolling
There are many benefits of foam rolling. These includes:
- Reduced DOMS (delayed onset of muscle soreness)
- Helps with removal of lactic acid, therefore speeding up recovery
- Breaks up scar tissue
- Increase flexibility and range of movement
- Increase circulation and blood flow
- Prevent injuries caused by muscle tightness
Investing in a foam roller is a smart way to improve your recovery. Easy to use and convenient for all levels in the comfort of your own home.