“The More You Know” Thursday: Benefits of Foam Rolling!

by Janine@ThePurpleGiraffe on April 19, 2012

PHEW! Can you believe it’s Thursday already?

This week has been crazy!

Between all-day trainings at work…

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Very different workouts than I’m used to…

I’m ready for either a nap or a massage!

Sadly, I don’t have time for either… so I’m going to rely on my trusty foam roller to get me through this!

What’s a foam roller?

A foam roller is a cylinder of foam that can be found in various sizes -  but they’re commonly about 6″ in diameter and resemble those old pool noodles that you probably used as a kid (or an adult, who am I kidding?).

How do I use it?

Basically, you use your body weight to apply direct pressure from the roller on your sore/tight muscles. Think about it like using a rolling pin to flatten out a pie crust – a foam roller is used in a similar fashion to remove/ease tension from your tight muscles!

What are the benefits?

First and foremost, it can help you de-stress. Much like a massage, foam rolling eases the tension in your body and allows you to relax. I love my foam roller after a long day at the office – especially if I’ve been sitting all day and am stiff!

Another benefit is that it can help you to PREVENT exercise-related injury! By rolling daily, you can effectively break up the fascia that builds up in your muscles after a tough workout, which helps prevent those areas from becoming trigger points for future injury!

Finally (and my favorite benefit), foam rolling can help you to increase your flexibility. I’m not very flexible AT ALL… going to yoga is a lesson in embarrassment for me most of the time. The foam roller can be used while stretching to help you gain flexibility and loosen up those tight muscles – and way cheaper than a massage!

What does it feel like?

Okay… admittedly, foam rolling can hurt… but much like a deep tissue massage, it hurts so good! The good thing is that the more frequently you use your foam roller on a specific area, the less painful it gets.

Where can I get one?

You can buy a foam roller for as little as $20 at your local sporting goods store – I got mine on Amazon.com – the Trigger Point Grid, which has little nubs/pressure points to allow for deeper massage while I’m rolling.

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Click here for some great moves/exercises you can do with your foam roller!

Happy rolling!

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

1 Whitney @ Whit Likes Fit
Twitter: whitlikesfit
April 19, 2012 at 6:31 pm

I cannot make it through the day without my foam roller. I have seriously tight IT bands and if I don’t roll every morning/night and before/after each workout I’m in serious pain. We go through the regular foam ones like crazy though because both my husband and I use them and they start to get soft. I’m thinking we need to step up and get one with actual pointy things even though they look scary. I’m definitely going to check out the one you have.

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