The foam roller love it or hate it, DON'T IGNORE IT as you definitely need it to..
What is this foam rolling or myofasial release?
Myofascial release is a very effective hands-on technique that provides sustained pressure into myofascial restrictions to eliminate pain and restore motion.
The superficial fascia is a soft connective tissue located just below the skin, it wraps and connects the muscles, bones, nerves and blood vessels of the body. Together, muscle and fascia make up what is called the myofascia system. For various reasons including disuse, not enough stretching, dehydration or injuries, the fascia and the underlying muscle tissue can become stuck together. This is called an adhesion and it results in restricted muscle movement, it also causes pain, soreness and reduced flexibility and range of motion.
So what does the foam roller actually do?
The foam roller or myofascial release is a body work technique in which a person uses gentle, sustained pressure on the soft tissues while applying traction to the fascia. This technique results in softening and lengthening (release) of the fascia and breaking down scar tissue or adhesions between skin, muscles and bones.
How will it help me?
Simple: myofascial release is a very effective hands-on technique that provides sustained pressure into myofascial restrictions to eliminate pain and restore motion. so if you want better flexibility spend at least 25-35 minutes a few times a week to get improvements on your mobility. (an example, see the short video below with a beastie ball)
Myofascial release has also been shown to relieve various muscle and joint pains such as IT band syndrome and shin splints as well as improving flexibility and range of motion.
• Using a tennis ball is very effective for targeting muscles of the upper back, like the teres major /minor & rear deltiods also hitting trigger points & relieving tension. If you want to get your overall back & legs the Rumble roller is an excellent choice, for deeper specific targeted areas choose The Beastie ball is highly recommended.
Why is it so important?
Fascia also plays an important role in the support of our bodies, since it surrounds and attaches to all structures. These structures would not be able to provide the stability without the constant pull of the fascial system. In fact, our bones can be thought of as tent poles, which cannot support the structure without the constant support of the guide wires (or fascia) to keep an adequate amount of tension to allow the tent (or body) to remain upright with proper equilibrium.
Habitual poor posture over time and repetitive stress injuries has a cumulative effects. The changes they cause in the fascial system influence comfort and the functioning of our body. The fascia can exert excessive pressure producing pain or restriction of motion. They affect our flexibility and stability, and are a determining factor in our ability to withstand stress and strain.
You have nothing to lose and everything to gain by spending some good quality time before & after exercise, the question is are you going to make the time for yourself?.
Since I'm in a generous mood, here is a free download for some foam rolling positions to get you started click here
Like to learn some advanced foam rolling techniques? get some Personal Training sessions with myself, click here to find out more
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