Home / Additional Resources / What is the Purpose of Foam Rolling?

 

Foam rolling smooths and lengthens your muscles and breaks up adhesions and scar tissue. Another benefit is that it helps your muscles relax by activating the sensory receptors connecting your muscle fibers to your tendons. The net effect is better blood circulation, which in turn speeds workout recovery and boosts performance. After a workout is the best time to roll those tense muscles then follow by a static stretch of the muscle. This helps your muscles return to the proper length and recover even faster because it can prevent the buildup of scar tissue.

Other benefits of foam rolling are:
Increased range of motion
Makes you feel better
Increased long term flexibility
Ability to touch your toes
Pain relief
Injury prevention
Improved strength

Key mistakes to Avoid when using a foam roller:
1,) Avoid rolling directly where you feel pain. When we feel pain, our first inclination is to massage that spot directly. However, this might be a big mistake. Go indirect before direct. If you find a spot that’s sensitive, it’s a cue to ease away from that area by a few inches. Take time and work a more localized region around areas that feel sore before using larger, sweeping motions.

2.) Avoid rolling too quickly. Your movements on the foam roller should be slow and concentrated. If you roll too fast, your muscles won’t have time to adapt to and manage the compression, and you’re not going to eliminate adhesions.

3.) Avoid spending too much time on the knots. We’re often told that if you feel a knot, spend time working that spot with the foam roller. However, some people will spend five to 10 minutes or more on the same area and attempt to place their entire body weight onto the foam roller. If you place sustained pressure on one body part, you might actually hit a nerve or damage the tissue, which can cause bruising.

 
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