In today’s world, back pain is one of the most common reasons people go to the doctor. People suffer from a variety of different pain and tension issues in different parts of their backs, from the shoulders to the middle of the back right down to the lower back.
With many kinds of therapies and yoga postures, people try to get relief. One such technique has gained much attention since a roller company named Chirp wheel bagged a wonderful deal in the shark tank.
This roller is made of foam or rubber and is completely rigid, thus allowing rolling and the application of vertical forces without causing its deformation. In addition, the outer part of the roller is padded, thus allowing different parts of the body to be supported on it in order to carry out exercises that promote muscle relaxation.
Although the origin of this exercise device is injury recovery , over time it has been incorporated into many soccer training routines , since it only takes a few minutes at the beginning or end of the routine to get the ball out. take full advantage of it (about ten minutes and never more than twenty if all the muscles allowed are exercised).
So let’s dissect what a foam roller is and how it can benefit you.
What is the Foam Roller?
The Foam Roller is a rubber or foam-rubber roller that remains firm and allows self-release of myofascial, using our own weight and agility, to “roll” through the area of our body that we intend to “massage.”
Foam rollers came to the limelight when a company named Chirp bagged the perfect deal in the shark tank.
Foam Roller Benefits
The foam roller acts as a discharge roller, exerting pressure on the muscle and releasing the tissues that may have created the “trigger points.”
Through foam roller exercises, you can obtain, among others, the following benefits:
- Improves blood flow in the treated areas and, therefore, facilitates the oxygenation of connective tissues.
- Helps prevent the formation of muscle contractures and/or attenuates them.
- It can improve the range of motion of a joint.
- Relieves muscle tension, improving recovery.
How and when to use it?
Its use is generally applied at two key moments: before and after the training session, allowing pain reduction and activating the muscles. In this way, the benefits of the foam roller according to the moment :
Before training: improve joint range.
- As an activation mode, the massage is more superficial and faster.
After training: improve recovery.
- Deeper massage improves blood circulation to oxygenate the muscles, soften the tissues and relieve possible muscle contractures and tensions.
Foam Roller Exercises
Some exercises we can do:
Zones to work
- Biceps and Triceps.
How and where to “roll”
- Calf area: roll, dropping the body weight from the ankle area to the highest part of the gastrocnemius (avoiding the popliteal fossa).
- Back of the thighs.
- Face down and with the forearms supported, massage from bottom to top on the quadriceps.
- On the back: we roll from the lowest part (lumbar quadratus) to the upper part of the back.
- From the side, placing the foam in the hip area, we roll towards the upper part of the knee through the tensor fascia lata.
Types of foam roller
The foam roller can have different hardnesses or densities and may or may not include bumps, and its use will depend on it:
A low-intensity foam roller is light and soft when it comes into contact with our body. It is ideal to end an intense workout since the athlete relieves the muscles without feeling very intense pressure. In addition, it is used to massage delicate areas such as the back.
The firm foam roller serves for a more intense and concentrated myofascial self-release. It is perfect for those athletes who seek to recover quickly.
When we talk about the short foam roller, we mean one that measures approximately half the length of an average roller. To work a specific area of the body, this type of roller is used. Its main advantage is that it is easier to handle, in addition to its low weight.
The textured foam roller features bumpy or ridge-like bumps in the foam that are meant to help release those muscle knots. This texture helps to concentrate the intensity in the areas you want to work on.
Finally, the foam roller of medium density is one that is in a medium range between firm rollers and low-intensity ones. It is very practical for a wide variety of exercises and treatments.
Final Verdict: The foam roller is a very useful element both for stretching and for the treatment of certain injuries, always keeping in mind that it must be recommended and supervised by an expert in physiotherapy.