Time To Get Rolling
Hi RxMuscle Girls,
Well, it's count-down to the holiday season, along with the festival of foods, fun and of course fitness! With all the hustle and bustle of trying to get everything done, including your workout, you still need to make time for yourself! Add to your day while you relieve stress, decrease tension, muscle soreness, and increase flexibility and mobility. Here's something that you should do for yourself… break out your roller!
Now some of you may be thinking, “What's a roller?” while many more of you may just have one propped in a corner, lost, alone and forgotten (shame on you). Lol
Foam rollers have been used by physical therapists for years, but it was only recently that National Academy of Sports Medicine (NASM) President Michael Clark, DPT, MS, PT, NASM-PES – who has been credited by many in the industry with exposing the sports medicine community to the foam roller, and in turn the fitness community – reinvigorated interest in this useful device. He showed a few photos of self-myofascial release using a foam roller. The technique illustrated was simple and self-explanatory: Get a foam roller and use your body weight to apply pressure to sore spots!
Foam rolling can help you practice self-myofascial release (when released flexibility and mobility can be restored). Using a foam roller is like having a massage therapist on-call, but instead of someone massage your tight, stressed muscles, you'll be doing it yourself, in the comfort of your home, gym or studio.
Rolling improves circulation, which gets the body ready for a workout and helps it recover afterward. And because rolling breaks down knots that limit range of motion, it preps muscles for stretching. Using a foam roller can be a more affordable way to give yourself a deep tissue massage. By slowly rolling over various areas of your body, you'll help break up adhesions and scar tissue and speed up the healing and recovery process after your workout.
You can use your foam roller to loosen up areas in your back, hamstrings, quadriceps, abductors, and adductors by positioning yourself on top of the roller and using the weight of your body to slowly roll back and forth over it.
Foam rollers can be purchased in one-foot or three-feet versions and are available in several density levels depending on the person and their level of comfort on rolling.
How to use your foam roller? You use your roller and apply pressure to the sensitive areas of your body, rolling back and forth, thereby releasing pressure in muscles. You can use longer movements when rolling areas such as your hamstrings, quadriceps, and adductors, while using smaller movements on areas like your gluteus maximus, gluteus medius, and hip rotators.
The feel of the roller and intensity of the self-massage should be properly geared to the age, comfort, and fitness level of the athlete. This is one of the pluses of having the athlete roll themselves – they can control the intensity with their own body weight.
One of the great benefits of using your foam roller is that you can use it both before and after your workout. Rolling prior to a workout can help decrease muscle density and promote a better warm-up. Rolling after a workout may help muscles recover more thoroughly from strenuous exercise.
With all the wonderful benefits of foam rolling, what are you waiting for? Time to get on the foam and roll!