Foam rollers have been on the scene for a while now. There are new kids on the block such as the rumble roller and the power stick to name a few. However; there are some ways of using the foam roller that just doesn’t work so well with the other kinds of myofascial release tools so if you want to minimise the amount of myofascial release tools you have lying around your house, a full length foam roller is a good buy. Here are our top 4 ways to use your foam roller.
1. More than just massage
The foam roller can be used for self massage in a lot of areas of the body including the legs and back to name a few.
It can also be used for stretching the chest, stretching the hip flexors, perform balancing exercises and strengthen the lower abdominals! It is very versatile which when considering what product to buy is a huge plus. If you were only going to buy one tool, compared to a spikey ball or a rumble roller, the foam roller is definitely a winner!
2. Save you money
Foam rolling regularly on you predetermined tight areas, combined with the right stretches and some prescribed strengthening exercises, can definitely reduce the amount of trips you might need to your musculoskeletal care person. In the long run it might save you a few bucks! Talk to us about putting a program together that’s right for you. Book online here.
3. Perform better at work, hobbies and sports
When foam roller exercises are part of a program to enhance correct postural alignment or to assist the correct muscle development set for a specific sport it can really make a difference to how you perform.
For example, a runner with tight hip flexors…The push off phase of running is the part where the back of the leg needs to do the work and the front of the leg needs to start to lengthen. If you have tight hip flexors it doesn’t allow your leg to come into the correct alignment meaning you end up using all the wrong muscles and over working those that are switching on. By foam rolling and actively stretching the hip flexors before a run you’re making sure the muscles, joints and nerves are ready to perform at their peak.
At work if your posture is better you will be able to perform your duties for longer without fatiguing or pain, whether it’s a standing or a sitting job. And hobbies much the same, you will be able to do longer sessions of the things you love without having to worry about pain the next day, a good example of this is gardening. Have you ever woken the next day with a tight low back after gardening? You should be able to enjoy what you love without struggle and without pain, this is what the foam roller combined with the right advice can do for you.
4. Relieve stress
I think most of us are aware of how good it feels to release endorphins and other “feel good” hormones. You can release endorphins and other calming neurotransmitters when you foam roll. It can also be quite meditative depending on your environment. Some of my customers do their routine at night before bed. They find a quite spot where they have a block of time to themselves. They might play some music and turn down the lights to promote higher levels of melatonin to kick in. It’s about finding what works for you but some of them are counting out of how many reps they are doing, some focus on their breathing, some focus on the sensation of their muscles beginning to soften beneath the roller.
Did you know a Myotherapist can help with pain, restriction and conditions of muscles, joints and nerves. We can assess, treat and prescribe movement therapy to help you feel better and learn how to treat yourself! Click here to find a time that suits you best.