Monday, October 14, 2013

The Foam Roller's Magic!

If you are having problems with your piriformis, IT band, or a tight lower back the foam roller can help you release tension in these muscles and increase range of motion.  The foam roller is a great tool for injury prevention and also can help you intensify your strength, power, and  agility workouts as well as endure longer bouts of aerobic endurance training.  The foam roller's magic comes from the relief of tension or the relaxation of a muscle caused by the application of tension to that muscle.  Once the tension is applied by rolling on the roller a relaxation effect takes place within the muscle.  The effect from this type of active deep tissue therapy is called autogenic inhibition.  Applying tension to a tight muscle can release that tension and also help maintain normal range of motion in muscles that are not tight.  It is best to use the foam roller on a daily basis to get the best results.  The foam roller can be used before, after or during your workout.  To guarantee improved range of motion, a 15 min stretch session using the foam roller twice a week will do the trick.   The main benefit of using the foam roller is to improve the economy or quality of your workouts.  With better technique and posture you will have more confidence to increase the weight or run at a higher intensity when no tension is keeping you from doing so.  More quality workouts will lead to a lower risk of injury, consistency and progressive overload which is the key to your body completely adapting to your fitness regimen.

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