Foam Rolling is commonly described as a self-myofascial release (SMR) technique that can aid someone who is suffering from muscle pain by releasing the tightness present in the muscles, decreasing the soreness and inflammation, and increasing their joint range of motion.
It can be an effective tool to add your gym routine, whenever you want, either during warm-ups or cooldowns. The benefits however may vary from person to person.
Is Foam Rolling Safe?
Even though foam rolling is generally considered to be a safe exercise, there are some concerns to it and if you are thinking of using foam rollers, chances are you should look into it, to assess how safe it is for you.
It is usually marketed towards people who experience muscle tightness while working out regularly. But you should consult your physician before starting foam rolling if you are suffering from serious muscle injuries such as muscle tear and chances are that they will recommend against it.
While using foam rollers, make sure to avoid the small joints present in your body such as your knees, elbows, and ankles as it might result in hyperextension and cause potential damage to them. While rolling out your legs, roll your calves first and follow them with your quads, doing them separately and avoiding the knee area.
Using foam rollers will help you to relieve some of the muscle tension which usually occurs during pregnancy but before doing it, always consult your physician and you will be advised against lying on your back during foam rolling in later stages of pregnancy.
Skip rolling out your calves during your third trimester as it may cause problems during labor. And if you notice some difficulties during foam rolling, consult your doctor immediately.
What are the benefits of Foam Rolling?
- Foam rolling is beneficial to people who suffer from sole muscles and inflammation. A small study of eight male participants found out that foam rolling after they have completed their gym session will help to reduce the delayed onset of muscle soreness. In the study, the participants were physically active men who foam rolled for 20 minutes immediately after completing their exercise and who foam rolled after 20 to 48 hours of exercising. These participants experienced a delay in the onset of muscle soreness when in comparison to people who never foam rolled. They also were better at working out than people who didn’t foam roll.
- Foam rolling will help you to increase your range of motion but in this field, more research is needed. Range of motion is important when it comes to improving one’s flexibility and performance. Researchers found out from one small study of 11 teenagers that a combination of foam rolling and static stretching was the most effective way of increasing the range of motion of muscles. This was then compared to static stretching and foam rolling alone.
- Some foam roller manufacturers and brands claim that the products can help you to lose and break up your fascia which is nothing but your body’s connective tissues which contribute to the appearance of cellulite. While using foam rollers will contribute temporarily to smooth skin, there’s no permanent scientific evidence of it helping to smoothen cellulitis in the long run. The best way to reduce cellulitis in your body is through maintaining an active lifestyle and consuming a healthy diet.
- SMR may be an effective and trusted source for easing body pain. It can also help in easing the tension present in your back. However, it’s essential that you take extra care while using foam rollers in the back area as it’s very easy to strain or injure your back while using one. In order to use the foam roller to decrease the intensity of pain in your lower back, turn your foam roller in such a way that it is positioned vertically to your spine and then slowly roll the roller from side to side so that it’s still in line with your spine. Do this instead of keeping it in a horizontal position which might require you to arch your back and then strain it further.
- SMR has shown promising results when it comes to the treatment of fibromyalgia. In one study which analyzed 66 adults who were living with fibromyalgia, it was found out that participants who foam rolled for the time period of 20 weeks reported that they experienced less pain intensity, muscle stiffness, fatigue in general, and depression and felt much better than people who didn’t try out foam rollers and were suffering from the same.
- A lot of people find foam rollers to be very relaxing as the breaking up of tightness present in the muscles makes them feel less tense and calm. However, there is very little evidence to show that it actually helps in relaxation. In a small study which examined 20 female participants it was found out that they either foam rolled or rested for more than half an hour after walking on the treadmill. Researchers were unable to find out that foam rolling caused reduced stress levels in comparison to resting.
The 6 Best Foam Rollers to Add to Your Home Gym:
1. It doesn’t matter if you’re recovering from a sports injury or you need to take the helm of your physical therapy efforts in your own hands or if you simply want a foam roller that relieves you of stress after a workout, LuxFit Foam Roller is going to suit all of your needs. For instance, it has a very high density as it is made out of moulded polypropylene foam. This material also helps it to not lose its shape even after years of usage. It is also spill-proof so you can roll it around places that have water nearby, it’ll never get wet. It’s available in three different sizes of 6″ x 36″, 6″ x 18″, 6″ x 12″ and is usually used to improve core and spinal stabilization, balance, re-education of muscles and improvement of your stamina. It also helps to provide relief to backaches and body pain.
2. If you’re someone who’s working out at home and has never used a foam roller before, chances are that you’ll be really confused on how to use a foam roller properly. Luckily, TriggerPoint GRID Foam Roller includes free online instructional films that demonstrate recommended practices. That way, you can keep an eye on the tool as it rolls to make sure you’re getting the most out of it. The design of this innovative roller contributes to some of its other advantages. It has a strong hollow core, measuring 13″ x 5.5,” and is made of high-quality, long-lasting materials. It’s a peopleâ€™s favourite on Amazon, with thousands of 5-star reviews, as well as the roller of choice among physical and massage therapists, coaches, trainers, and athletes for its GRID system. Unlike other flat foam rollers, this one features a multi-dimensional surface that mimics the hands of a massage therapist. The GRID also aids in the improvement of oxygen flow and tissue healing.
3. The OPTP may be a suitable choice if you prefer a stationary half roller to a complete roller that moves with you. Reviews compliment it for having precisely the appropriate amount of softness and firmness, thanks to its construction of a durable cross-linked, closed-cell foam. For versatility in Pilates, yoga, and stability exercises, it has both flat and round sides. When dealing with very delicate regions, one reader suggested applying it on a bed to make it less harsh. It’s ideal for anyone who is new to rolling or who requires a roller that isn’t as hard or as painful.
4. While normal (a.k.a. thick and round) rollers are intended for back rolling, a slenderer stick form can be valuable for arriving at ties, separating them, and lessening distress in more modest or more particular areas. This 18-inch Tiger Tail rub stick (likewise accessible in an 11-inch travel size and a more drawn-out 22-inch size) arrives at profound to treat joint and muscle throbs, and it won’t squeeze your skin since it’s padded (not made of hard plastic). It’s likewise involved top Caliber, Non-retentive, non-decaying shut cell froth that is not difficult to clean and ergonomically designed to forestall finger and hand weakness, bringing about more reliable strain. This stick roller is suggested by both actual advisors and alignment specialists for muscle issues, fits, and touchiness. It additionally accompanies a three-year guarantee, would it be advisable for you to dislike it down the line.
5. Add these Kieba Massage Lacrosse Balls for Myofascial Release, Trigger Point Therapy, Muscle Knots, and Yoga Therapy to your recuperation routine. Each order includes two lacrosse balls, which are available in the following colour combinations: red and blue, green and yellow, and orange. This little ball can be used on your shoulders, neck, glutes, back, and other areas. Its small size and compact design make it simpler to target smaller muscle areas than a traditional foam roller.
6. Whether you’re lifting weights or lugging a large box, your shoulders take a lot of abuse, resulting in muscle soreness and the need for relief. Try the RumbleRoller Beastie Bar and Stands to relieve shoulder pain. Two “Beasties,” which are spiky foam massage balls, are included on this funky-looking wand. Small pressure points, such as your shoulders and neck, might be relieved by using these. Because the stands are detachable, you can simply roll the massage balls to release knots in your body. The massage balls are solid and adaptable, according to reviewers, so you may use them to relieve tension all around. Each one features 60 “firm, high-profile bumps” to ensure that your recuperation approach is as effective as possible. This product is available in one size and one-color combination, grey and green.