What is a foam roller?
A foam roller is a cylindrical piece of molded foam that is used for self-massage. It is essentially a very firm massage tool that can be used to help relieve muscle tension and soreness. You can buy them at most sporting goods stores, and they come in different sizes and densities, but the most common size is about six inches in diameter and 18-36 inches long.
How do I use a foam roller?
Want to improve flexibility, performance, and reduce injuries? Get to know the foam roller! This infographic covers all the essential moves to rock (n’ roll) that next workout. Foam rolling is a great alternative to help relieve tight muscles when you can’t always make it to the massage therapist.
To use a foam roller:
- Sit on the floor with the roller in front of you.
- Place the roller under one thigh and slowly roll it up and down the length of your thigh.
- Switch legs and do the other thigh.
- Place the roller under one calf and slowly roll it up and down the length of your calf.
- Switch legs and do the other calf.
- Place the roller under one arm and slowly roll it up and down the length of your arm.
- Switch arms and do the other arm.
Benefits of using a foam roller
A foam roller is has many benefits, including:
1) Foam rolling helps to improve flexibility. When you roll out your muscles, you help them to lengthen and become more flexible. This is especially beneficial before a workout, when you want your muscles to be as loose as possible.
2) Foam rolling helps to improve circulation. The roller massages your muscles, which in turn gets the blood flowing and increases circulation. This is especially beneficial after a tough workout, when your body needs all the help it can get in terms of healing and repairing muscle tissue.
3) Foam rolling helps to prevent injuries. If you use the roller regularly, you will help keep your muscles loose and limber.
4) Foam rolling helps to reduce pain. When you use the roller regularly, you will help your muscles recover from workouts and soreness in a faster rate. Foam rolling also helps to break up scar tissue, which will reduce pain and inflammation.
5) Foam rolling is great for the spine. This is especially true if you foam roll before or after a workout.
How do I know if Im foam rolling correctly?
The best way to see if you’re foam rolling correctly is to watch someone else do it. That said, there are a few key pointers to follow: First, make sure the roller is placed perpendicular to the muscle being rolled. Second, use moderate pressure and move slowly up and down the length of the muscle. Finally, hold each position for about 30 seconds. If you’re feeling particularly tight, you can also “walk” up and down the muscle with the roller.
A foam roller is a self-massage tool that can help to reduce muscle pain and tension. The roller can be used before and after exercise to improve performance and reduce the risk of injury. It can also be used to relieve pain in other areas of the body such as the neck and back.
A full-body workout with your foam roller
If you’re looking to improve your overall fitness, a full-body workout with your foam roller can be a great way to do it. Check out this infographic to find some great ideas for Foam roller exercises! Please feel free to leave any questions or comments in the comments below.
Original infographic via greatist.com in 2012, content updated March 2022.