What is Foam Rolling?

Foam rolling massage is a self-massage that uses a foam roller to massage the body. The foam roller is ideally 6 inches thick and 36 inches long. Foam rolling has been becoming popular to trainers, fitness professionals as well as fitness clients. This is because it provides same benefits of getting a massage without going outside the house to spend lots for a masseur.

The quality of the foam roller dictates the quality of massage that you can get. The denser the equipment is the more pressure is applied on the muscles. Foam rolling is performed by lying on the equipment and rolling in against the body part that needs massage. Foam rolling exercise only takes about five to ten minutes to do. The mechanism of foam rolling is similar to the use of a rolling pin, although much softer. The principle of foam rolling is similar to acupressure, only that you can do it on your own. The rollers are used to even out the muscles and fascia just like what a rolling pin does on pizza dough. The foam roller targets tensed muscles and allow fascia release and enhanced muscle relaxation.

Benefits of Foam Rolling

Foam rolling provides vast benefits such as:

Helps prevent injury during work outs

This self-massage techniques aids in loosening tight fascia as well as enhancing the flexibility of the muscles. It considered a massage and an exercise in one, which helps people to avoid muscle injuries during strenuous activities.
Hastens recovery from muscle injuries

Foam rolling self-massage is also important in improving muscle injuries. The massage relaxes the muscles on the area affected by providing a continuous pressure on the area.
Enhanced blood circulation

When the muscles and the fascia are more relaxed, the blood flow is improved because the blood vessels are not constricted by tight muscles. Rolling is usually done before any exercise to improve the blood flow to an area and avoid anaerobic metabolism of cells.
Improved range of motion

Foam rolling self-massage also allows for better mobility because the muscles are not tensed and strained. There is improved flexibility of the muscles; thereby improved range of motion is achieved.
Enhanced well-being

As with any massage therapy, foam rolling self-massage also enhances well-being because of the removal of stress points in the body.

Procedure of Foam Rolling

The procedure for foam rolling starts with the identification of areas to be rolled. Generally, the whole body should be massaged starting from the large muscle groups until the smaller ones. Press the body area against the foam roller on the floor. Use your body weight to roll the foam against your muscles. It is ideal to apply rolling up to 30 seconds especially when there are tight areas on the muscles. Focus on rolling the muscles and not on the joints. Clients are generally advised to start with a less dense foam roller and progressing to denser rollers over time.

For examples of these and other things you can do at home to relieve pain and strengthen your core to prevent discomfort, check out these videos from Dr. Mohr, your Tampa chiropractor.