THE BENEFITS OF FOAM ROLLING Posted on 14 July 202120 November 2021 by Michelle Jones If you keep up to date with the latest trends in fitness, the chances are you’re always hearing about new exercises, new pieces of equipment and new routines that will transform your life and tone your body. And though many of these fitness trends may turn out to be fads, one that seems to be here to stay is foam rolling. Easy, effective and fun, foam rolling will revolutionise your gym experience, helping you to feel healthier, fitter and more relaxed, even after the toughest of workout sessions. IMPROVE FLEXIBILITY AND REDUCE ACHES Also known as self-myofascial release, foam rolling has become incredibly popular in recent years, with everywhere from your local easyGym to luxury country clubs investing in a roller. Once used exclusively by elite athletes, coaches and therapists, foam rolling helps you to release muscle tightness and massage sore limbs after a workout. By applying pressure to the right places in the right way, foam rolling can prevent stiffness, pain and help you’re muscles return to their normal function. As long as you’re doing foam rolling exercises correctly, you should be able to increase your range of motion, improve flexibility and even reduce post-workout fatigue. FOAM ROLLING EXERCISES Foam rolling is most effective when it’s used to target specific parts of your body, so the best way to begin is to ask a member of staff at your gym to talk you through the basics. Incorrect use of foam rolling won’t be as effective and could even cause your aches and pains to become worse. In order to get to specific muscles, you’ll need to hold your body in certain poses while using the foam roller. These poses will change depending on which muscles you’re trying to massage and whether or not you have any knots or trigger points to work on. In general, you should spend around 20 minutes working on each tender spot, making sure you roll slowly and being careful not to put too much pressure on trigger points and sore muscles. Though it’s fine to use the roller on your upper back, avoid using the foam roller on your lower back as this can cause your muscles to contract, making your pain and stiffness worse. WHY SHOULD YOU INCLUDE FOAM ROLLING IN YOUR ROUTINE? Taking the time to cool down after a tough training session is incredibly important if you want your muscles to recover, heal and become stronger. Massaging your muscles through foam rolling helps to kick start this process, helping your muscles to heal quicker and helping you to improve your performance in the gym. If that wasn’t incentive enough, the idea that you can stroll out of the gym after an hour or two of weights, reps and stretches and feel almost as good as new should help to convince you that foam rolling really is the way forward. Why not give foam rolling a go next time you’re at the gym and find out what all the fuss is about for yourself?