Foam Rolling 101 + my favorite moves
Hello , HOPPY FRIDAY!
I obviously spend a lot of time working out and pushing my body, and I show that on my social media accounts. But something I maybe don’t show enough of—even though it’s a crucial part of my health—is foam rolling. So I want to break that down a little bit; give information on what foam rolling is, why it’s important, how it feels, and when and how I do it. Hopefully after reading this, you’ll want to incorporate it into your routine!
What is foam rolling?
It’s basically a form of self-massage, and the foam roller is used to release muscle tension from trigger points or knots in your body. You don’t have to use a foam roller to do this, but it’s my favorite way/tool especially when I want to recover quick from a hard workout. People also use tennis or lacrosse balls, which are especially great if you have knots in your back or to massage the bottom of your feet.
Why does it hurt?
You’ll usually feel a bit of pain when you hit these trigger points, but the pain means that you’re actually releasing that muscle and in turn allowing it to heal faster. It almost feels like a deep tissue massage! Just be mindful of your body and pain, but know foam rolling isn’t always comfortable. If one area hurts too bad or you have an injury, do NOT foam roll it or ease off on the pressure.
Why is it important?
By applying pressure to these trigger points or sore areas, you’re helping those muscles heal so you can train with better flexibility and mobility. So similar to stretching muscles out before and after a tough workout, foam rolling is key to keeping your body healthy. It also alleviates soreness and gets you back to your workouts hopefully the next day :P
When to foam roll?
There are a lot of different studies that show contradicting info on when to foam roll. Some studies show that foam rolling BEFORE a workout—along with dynamic stretching—can help to reduce the chance of injury. But foam rolling is also super helpful on rest days or evenings before bed, I also fall asleep WAY faster when I do from relaxation. So do what feels best for you!
How to foam roll?
To foam roll correctly, you have to be patient. You should take the roller, apply pressure to a certain trigger area, and use your bodyweight to roll it over your trigger point/muscle—usually moving an inch per second. Roll the roller back and forth for up to 30 seconds until you feel the tension start to release (it should get less painful!). A lot of times you’ll hold yourself up and roll over the roller. Here’s a great video since a visual is easier to show :)
My favorite areas to foam roll are:
SIDE HIP & QUADS
Definitely talk to your doctor if you have an injury before doing any type of foam rolling. And on top of taking this step to restore your muscles, make sure to hydrate, eat clean, and get some rest! Your body will thank you :)
Have an amazing weekend!