What are the Benefits of Foam Rolling?

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This Saturday we’re hosting a Foam Rolling Workshop in our beautiful REBEL studio, taught by our always amazing Charis Cook.

But with a time dedicated to this incredibly inexpensive piece of equipment, we’ve started to get the question from some members, “What the heck is the deal with this crazy foam rolling thing?”

So let’s dive into this topic to explore a bit about the benefits of foam rolling.  You may never look at a foam roller the same…

The Background

For starters, using a foam roller allows a form of myofascial release.  This myofascia (or fascia) is a thin layer of tissue that covers our muscles and bones.  When we overtrain, get over stressed, or consistently sit/stand with poor posture, then our myofascia becomes tight and inflamed.  This has the tendency to cause headaches, back and neck pain, and recurring injuries over time.

If you’ve ever heard someone say that they have a “knot” in their back or their neck, then they’re likely talking about a myofascial trigger point - essentially small, incredibly tense muscles all grouped together into one spot.  Tight, damaged myofascia and these myofascial trigger points are painful because they inhibit blood flow to our tissues.

While getting a massage loosens this fascia and these trigger points, it’s unrealistic to expect that we get a massage before and after every workout.  (If you do, then we’re jealous!)  So, our next best alternative is foam rolling.

Benefits of Foam Rolling

There are a huge array of benefits related to foam rolling, but some of the primary benefits you should know about include:

Removes lactic acid and aids in recovery.  Lactic acid builds up in our muscles over time, specifically noticeable following a workout.  This is part of the soreness that you might feel a day or two following a really tough workout, as this lactic acid makes our muscle stiff and tense.  Foam rolling breaks up lactic acid to significantly reduce recovery time and improve range of motion following a workout.

Increases blood circulation.  As mentioned earlier, tight myofascia and myofascial trigger points block blood flow to the surrounding tissue.  Utilizing a foam roller to loosen up these tight points allows for increased blood circulation and eliminates the discomfort that these trigger points cause to your system.  A win all around!

Deep stress release.  Remember our post about adrenal fatigue?  An element of which causes this condition is tight acupressure points.  Myofacial release through foam rolling has been proven to calm the nervous system by loosening these acupressure points and creating elasticity and length in the muscles.  This helps to deepen the breadth and create a sense of calmness in the body.

Improved flexibility and range of motion.  When our myofascia and muscles become tight, it restricts many elements of our range of motion.  The intense pressure applied to the tissue and muscles through foam rolling loosens our entire system by breaking up the tension, thus improving our flexibility before and after a workout.

Prevents injuries.  Foam rolling before and after a workout loosens our bodies, increases our flexibility, and improves our blood flow so that our system can operate efficiently to help to prevent injuries before they happen.

How to Foam Roll

The best way to learn how to foam roll is to pop into our Foam Roll Workshop this Saturday.  Check out all of the awesome details here.  (We promise, it’s going to be incredible!)

Another great option is to train one-on-one with one of our personal trainers.  We are realistic in goal setting, explain what to expect in each session, and teach you all of the specific so that your workouts are tailored to YOU.

This post was brought to you by the best gym in Denver - The REBEL Workout!