Foam rolling: is it hype, a fad, beneficial or just plain painful? Let"s explore what foam rolling is first, then we will discuss the when and why.
Foam rolling is a myofascial release technique that uses pressure to reduce and release scar-tissue build up and adhesions in your fascia. This frees up your muscles to move and essentially work better during exercise or any other activity for that matter.
But what is this fascia you always hear about? And why is it so important to movement? Fascia is the web-like fibrous connective tissue that surrounds our muscles, organs, bones and every other internal structure in our bodies. It is a very densely woven matrix that is actually one uninterrupted system that connects every single internal structure. So when fascia develops scar-tissue or adhesions for any reason, it will create restrictions in movement of the attached structures and can also lead to pain in that area.
Now back to the when and why we should all be foam rolling. If you are wanting to quickly decrease your stiffness and aid in your warm-up, you should foam roll before your workout. Foam rolling after your workout is great for decreasing muscle soreness and aiding in muscle recovery from strenuous exercise. If you are wanting to increase your overall mobility and flexibility, foam rolling any time of day regardless of relationship to your workout would be beneficial.
If you have any questions on specific techniques or how to foam roll certain muscles, please contact our office and we would be happy to guide you through the process.