The Foam Roller: Your New Best Friend!

The Foam Roller has many uses, but perhaps the most impressive is its ability to prevent injury and increase flexibility in those who suffer from tight or fatigued muscles. As a long-time fitness instructor who teaches more than several classes per week and enjoys running and strength training on her own time, I have found the foam roller to be an invaluable piece of equipment.    Like traditional stretching, the Foam Roller elongates muscles, but it does so by intensely “massaging” the muscles.  The massaging breaks up adhesions in your fascia (the tissue that surrounds your muscles), therefore increasing blood flow to tight areas, limiting soreness and increasing flexibility.

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There are several different types of Foam Rollers available.  Each roller affects the muscles in a similar manner; however, the denser the roller or the deeper the ridges on the roller, the more intense the stretch will be.  If you are new to Foam Rolling, use a softer-based roller, so that you can roll over muscles without causing too much discomfort.  Once you have been rolling for a while, you can switch to a firmer roller.  The more the foam roller is used, the less discomfort you will experience.  When used correctly, the Foam Roller may be used on all parts of the body.

The Foam Roller should never be used as a means of rehabbing torn or injured muscles, but rather as a way of preventing tight muscles from injury.  Furthermore, it should not be used as a replacement for proper stretching, warm up or cool-down.  The best time to use a Foam Roller is after your workout during cool-down / stretch.   Adding in some Foam Roller time for period of 3-5 minutes (or more, if you exercise intensely) is recommended.   My favorite time to use a Foam Roller is after a long run or when my muscles are simply in need of a little extra TLC – in which case, I will roll at home at night while reading or watching TV, often for up to an hour.

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When used consistently and correctly, the Foam Roller can aid in muscle recovery, injury prevention and increased flexibility.  I would love to show you more about this amazing piece of equipment and anything else you would like to learn about!  Email me at  or read more about me on my web page. I would love to see you for a free one-on-one consultation.