We all know how important stretching is, not only before and after a workout but for daily strength and mobility as well. But what about foam rolling? Have you ever heard of it? What exactly does it do? It’s one of the simplest and most effective ways to release tightness in muscles and tissues to allow for better performance and decreased risk of injury.
A foam roller is a long, cylindrical foam tool that helps a person massage out their own body parts. You can use as much or as little pressure in areas as you’d like, and it allows you to pinpoint right where you may have an issue. Not only do our muscles become tight and knotted, but our fascia does too. Fascia is a connective tissue made up mostly of collagen. When fascia becomes tangled, you may notice decreased mobility and flexibility, lack of body-symmetry, cellulite, and injury.
Foam rolling before a workout will help to warm and stretch the muscles and prepare them to work. You can also roll after a workout to relieve any tightness or knots you may have acquired during the workout. Daily use will also keep your muscles and fascia healthy, allowing you to keep good posture, mobility, strength, and skin appearance.
The convenience of it is great, too. You can do it by yourself! Foam rollers are easy enough to use and reach everywhere on your body that you won’t have to have a partner help you. Find the problem area and focus there and apply pressure. Keep in mind that it may be painful! It’s not much different from a massage. Sometimes it takes several days to work on a specific spot before you have it completely corrected.
Using a foam roller is also one of the best ways to combat cellulite. How? Cellulite appears when weak, unhealthy fascia pulls down on the skin, forcing fat cells to poke up and cause the simply appearance. Keeping your fascia healthy by performing myofascial release (foam rolling) will keep your skin looking healthy, youthful, and strong.
With that, it also promotes healthy circulation. Many things benefit from improved blood circulation; more oxygen to the blood, better lymphatic drainage, reduced inflammation, and improved flexibility and range of motion, just to name a few.
Foam rolling is a holistic tool that can be used in all forms of movement and exercise. Using it daily will not only improve your exercise performance but also your health and the longevity of your muscles and connective tissues.
Watch below for a quick demo on how to use a foam roller!