5 Ways To Use A Foam Roller

So there’s that weird tool you may see in the gym, your physical therapist’s office, possibly at road races… and you see people torturing themselves upon it. My friends, that is a foam roller 🙂
Meet my frenemy. I call her Elvira.

I wanted to share how I use the foam roller (yes you can use it for more than just that IT band) so below you will find 5 different ways to torture relieve your muscles and get in a great post-workout sesh!

1– {{Muscle Groups}}

The most common and well-known way to use the roller. Many athletes will feel tight from training the same muscle groups over and over. If you’re not stretching/rolling you will start to feel discomfort doing the sport that you normally do. Here are the ones I feel work the best:

Tips: move along the roller slowly, find where you feel it working the most, and stay there doing smaller rolls till tightness decreases.

2– {{Posture}}

This one is “relaxing”. My roller is kind of small, so I put a pillow to support my head while the length of the roller is aligned with my spine. Pull your spine towards the roller by using those deep belly muscles; this way the entire length of your spine is in full contact with the roller- no arch in your low back. Keep knees bent, feet flat. Let your arms hang out to the side to make a T-shape and just breathe and try to relax! For those of you with desk jobs or poor posture (where you’re always hunching over), you’ll feel this one good.

Tips: Listen to one soothing song start-to-finish to help relax ya.

3– {{Lower Abdominals}}

and knees) to prepare for a lower ab workout. Gently let down one foot at a time, using the conWanna work on controlling that lower belly? Keep the previous position, but toss those legs at a 90 degree angle (both hips trol from your core muscles. Repeat back and forth, and make sure your breathing! Steady yourself with your hands at side.

Tip: if you feel you are wobbling every which way, go back to the starting point (with knees up) to regain your balance before starting back again. Going fast isn’t key here.

4– {{Plank Hold}}

As if planks weren’t hard enough, let’s through a balance act in there.Try not to let the roller bobble! Any exercise you do on an uneven surface (foam roller, BOSU ball, etc) will challenge your core.

Tip: if you’re prone to wrist pain, this may not be the best exercise. Stick with holding plank or doing push-ups with fists.

5– {{Hamstring stretch}}

If you can already reach your toes comfortably when doing a hamstring stretch, prop those ankles onto the roller and do the same. It’s a greater stretch, you’ll feel right away. No bouncing, ever, with stretching 🙂

Tip: with each breath you take, try to fold deeper into your stretch.

Tell me….

Do you own a foam roller or have you ever used one before?

What is YOUR favorite way to use the roller?

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