In recent years, many fitness enthusiasts have started foam rolling to reduce muscle soreness and ease muscle tension following strenuous workouts. But does it actually do anything or is it just another influencer driven practice that the fitness community has clung onto? In this article, we will explore the benefits of foam rolling and give some insight into whether or not it actually works.
The purported benefits of foam rolling include improved range of motion, improved recovery and enhance muscle performance. Although there has been no established proof that foam rolling is beneficial, it still is a standard practice that bodybuilders and powerlifters incorporate into their daily routines. However, new research is beginning to shed a light on how effective foam rolling can be if you have tense or tight muscles.
Foam rolling works by applying pressure to the fascia, or soft connected tissue, that supports and protects muscle. When inflammation occurs, the connective tissue can thicken and cause pain or soreness. Through the process of foam rolling, these muscles will achieve relief much like what is provided during a massage session. However, the results obtained won’t be as noticeable as they would be with a traditional massage.
To use a foam roller and achieve results, you will need to roll the foam underneath affected muscle groups or tender areas while applying pressure for up to 60 seconds at a time. This will provide the optimal amount of pressure to increase your range of motion and decrease the tension an inflamed muscle provides. While you can do this for longer, this is often the optimal amount of time to begin seeing results.
Do You Use a Foam Roller? Does It Provide Relief?