Foam roller, massage roller for fitness is a related equipment for sports in the form of a cylinder. It is used both for warming up before the main workout, and for recovery after it. Like any simulator, it has its own varieties (in size, rigidity, shape) and application features. Let’s look into all the intricacies of this tool, which has recently become an essential attribute of professional athletes and fitness enthusiasts.
What are the benefits of self-massage rollers
In 2020, a research team conducted a study on how useful a massage roller is. The scientists wanted to understand whether it affects the quality of the warm-up (in order to increase performance in training) and whether it helps to relax the ligaments and muscles after sports.
They highlighted the following positive aspects of using a self-massage roller:
- it reduces muscle stiffness and should be used in conjunction with dynamic stretching and an active pre-workout warm-up;
- reduces crepatura (delayed muscle pain) after intense exercise and can therefore be used for post-workout recovery.
Another study showed the following benefits of using foam rollers and massage sticks:
- the use of a roller in the warm-up has a positive effect on sprint training and flexibility exercises;
- in a hitch, the roller can significantly reduce pain and achieve muscle relaxation.
The scientists noted that the addition of roller rolling increased joint mobility and flexibility compared to stretching exercises alone.
1. For back muscles
Lie face up with your neck relaxed. Bend your knees, put your feet on the floor so that the roller is just above the waist. Slowly lower your knees to the left, pause, then lower your knees to the right. Repeat three times on each side.
Lie face up with your knees bent and place the roller under the middle of your back. Close your hands behind your head. It is necessary to roll the roller from the middle of the back to the shoulder blades. Make four back and forth movements.
2. For buttocks and thighs
While seated, place a foam roller under your left buttock and roll up and down the entire length of your thigh. Repeat the same with the right leg.
Sit on the roller, shift your weight to the left. Roll your left buttock up and down four times, then pull your left knee to your chest and return to the starting position. Repeat on the right buttock.
From a plank position on your forearms, turn your left leg outward and place the roller perpendicular to your thigh. Shift your weight, roll along your inner thigh four times. Repeat with the right leg.
3. For calves and feet
Lie face up with your knees bent and place your feet on the roller, arms at your sides, palms up. Press down on your heels to lift your hips. The body forms a straight line from head to knees. While holding this starting position, extend your left leg, hold it for two seconds, then return to the starting position. Then extend your right leg. Do 10 reps on each leg.
Sit with your arms at your sides. Place the roller under both legs near the Achilles tendons. Make movements back and forth along the entire length of the calf muscles. Do 10-15 repetitions.
The most common mistakes when exercising with a massage roller
- Muscle tension during rolling. The muscles must be relaxed, then the massage effect will be achieved.
- Intense movements. You don’t have to practice speed. Rolling should be smooth. Stop for a while in places of clogging and push through the point with effort.
- Impact on bony prominences. In no case do not put pressure on the lower back, cervical vertebrae, knee joints.
- Self-solving problems with triggers. Be careful in situations like this. A trigger point is a tightness in the muscles and fascia that can occur after exercise and respond with soreness when squeezed or even referred pain. If you experience these symptoms, we recommend that you consult a specialist.
Bless you ! And choose a massage roller for yourself and as a gift.