The Foam Roller 101

It’s a love hate relationship with the Foam Roller. As we know it provides one of those hurts so good type of situations. We are going to help you get through it… roll through it.

Types of Foam Rollers:

– Since the foam roller first made its debut appearance in and around 1997, there have been many different shaped and sized foam rollers hitting the market, following different theoretical ideas.

1. The Classic Foam Roller, comes in different lengths and diameters. The most common is 36 inches long and 6 inches in diameter.

– foam rollers are typically made of a high-density packing foam that will not crush under body weight yet is soft enough on the surface layers to allow your body to roll against it.

– they come in different densities: Medium – density foam rollers are great for those who prefer a less-intense deep-tissue massage, and for those who are new to foam roller deep-tissue massage. Often the roller colour is White for Medium. High-density foam rollers are for those who want an intense deep-tissue massage. Often Blue or Black in Colour. The high the density the harder and firmer of a massage you will feel on your muscles.

– the size of the roller can verity in terms of functionality. Recommend is the 6″x36″ (long) foam roller because it allows you to lie on it vertically (see below in exercises) The only difference and benefit of 6″x18″ (short) foam rollers is that they are more portable than 6″x36″ foam rollers for travel or storage etc. Foam rollers also come cut-in-half lengthways and these are used flat side down, they are best for beginners who are not ready for a foam roller that moves.

 

 

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2. The Rumble Roller, comes in difference lengths

– usually is categorized under experimental or high-tech foam roller. Meant for those of us looking for a deep tissue massage. The large bumps that cover the surface are intended to feel like the fingers of a masseuse. Great for digging deep into the muscles.

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3.  The Grid Foam Roller, comes in difference lengths

– unlike a traditional foam roller, the surface varies in density meaning you can easily adjust the intensity you need by changing which part of it you use depending on how sore or tight you are.

– because the surface isn’t flat like a traditional foam roller, it allows for blood and oxygen to channel through the muscle helping to create change in the tissue.

– the great thing about the different size options in the foam roller is that it is compact and easy for travel. Having the grid is such a great option because its like a 2 in 1 roller allowing you to change pressure and texture as you roll different muscles.

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4.  The Hand Held Rollers, come in different textures and lengths

1 – The Tiger Tale

– I myself own one of these, use it on a daily basis and love it! it has worked miracles on my muscles. The reason I prefer to use this hand held rolling pin method over a foam roller is because I am able to apply more pressure to more unique and small muscle areas. I am able to apply greater pressure using my hands to roll across the muscles.

– You don’t have to lay on the floor or stand up against a wall to use it and its extremely easy to travel with. I take the tiger tale everywhere I travel in my carry on bag!

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2 – The Stick

– As you can see this rolling pin layout has been used in many ways adding different textures to the middle rolling area. Each texture will depend on what kind of massage or deep tissue massage you are looking to have.

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Why Am I Foam Rolling?

1. Ideally a deep tissue massage from a massage therapist would help break down and release tight muscles or knots you may have, however if someone isn’t able to work out the knots in your muscles, and it is commonly known for this process may be uncomfortable and at times painful, foam rolling can help provide release in those tight spots. It gives you the user the ability to control the healing and recovery process by applying pressure in precise locations, because only you can feel exactly what is happening. It is always recommended to consult with your physician or physical therapist for therapeutic/sharp pain and receive approval before starting foam rolling release. For most people you will be cleared immediately and your doctor will encourage the practice.

2. Releasing trigger points helps to reestablish proper movement patterns and pain free movement, and ultimately, to enhance performance. Utilizing stretching alone is not always enough to release muscles tightness, which is why foam rollers have thrived. Imagine a bungee cord with a knot tied into it and then envision stretching the cord. This creates tension, stretching the unknotted portion of the muscle and the attachment points. The knot, however, has remained unaltered.

3. Foam rolling can assist in breaking up these muscle knots, resuming normal blood flow and function. The goal to any corrective or recovery technique is to get you back to the point of normal functioning, as if nothing was ever wrong. When was the last time you trained like you were a teenager, going hard without a second thought, and injuries were something that only happened due to physical trauma or repetitive use.

4. Because it hurts so good! is simple words you are releasing muscle tension, correcting muscle imbalances, increasing range of motion, creating blood flow and helping injury prevention.

 

How to Foam Roll!

– Try to roll at least 3-4 times a week, depending on how much you are needing to release.

–  A goal of 10-15 minutes of rolling at a time or more if needed. 60-90 seconds a side then swap.

1. Your Gluteus Glutefoam_roller_glutesHips-007.tif




2. Your Hip Flexors

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3. Your IT Band

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4. Your Inner Thighs

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5. Your Calf Muscles

Calf-Roll 14225724195226. Your Shins

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7. Your Quads

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8. Your Lower and Upper Back

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9. Your Lats

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Hand Held Rolling:

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Now lets ROLL ourselves to a fast recovery. Lets keep our muscles loose and injury free!

PS. here are a couple other things foam rollers are used for…

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