This is your guide on the why, how, and when of foam rolling. If you’ve ever had doubts, look no further: foam rolling is a painful but necessary part of your fitness routine. Check out our thoughts and experiences below:
So what is a foam roller actually for?
Foam rollers are a variation of a massaging tool. They are used to help reduce soreness and tension, and are particularly helpful for people who need to visit massage therapists regularly. While they aren’t a replacement to the expertise and value of a professional therapist, they can be an aid and even space out visits to reduce cost. Rollers are also fantastic for distance runners (many swear they couldn’t run a marathon without one!), hardcore fitness buffs, and even people who work long hours on their feet.
How does it work?
Without getting too science-y, the most common explanations follow these lines: Muscles are coated by a tissue called fascia, which can be scarred by various injuries. Scarring causes the fascia to stick to the muscle, causing a lack of movement which then results in pain. Foam rolling claims to release this sticking which leaves your muscles loose and pain-free!
Is it Worth it?
Now, while a foam roller is more of an investment item - the average price kicking in at around $50 for a piece of foam with bumps on it - the price is well worth the cash. We all dread the morning after a hard workout where your muscles are so sore you don’t feel like getting out of bed and end up hobbling your way through the day. Foam rolling after your workout is the magical solution: review after review says that the day-after-workout soreness was reduced by huge proportions.
With very minimal effort in the actual process of foam rolling, it’s easily done for a wide variety of people. From the person who struggles with sore legs after an 8 hour shift to the person who just ran a half marathon - foam rolling is for everyone! You can do it watching TV, listening to music, even playing with your kids. It’s not a total substitute for a professional massage, but it functions well for post-workout or ‘it’s been a long day’ soreness.
We’d highly recommend trying one of these versatile rollers out! It may not seem like much from first impressions but it can truly make a difference in your day-to-day fitness.