Foam Rolling: The What, Why and How

 

Introduction

Foam Rolling has become very popular. It has become popular because we are not as active as we once were. Our lifestyles today do not require as much movement as it once did. A perfect example of this is the grocery store Giant, Peapod delivery service! Not moving our bodies wrecks them!

For those that are active, injuries may still occur. When a person is not active, does a lot of sitting,  sleeps in awkward positions or when a person is active and gets injured, their body responds by putting their muscle tissues into overdrive. In other words, they end up working harder than they should which leads to knots in the connective tissue found throughout our entire body. This is where foam rolling in Bethesda can be very helpful.

 

What is Foam Rolling?

Foam rolling is applying gentle, consistent pressure to a sore or tender muscle through a device like the one picture above. That pressure will send a signal from your muscle to your brain telling it to relax. If you are familiar with a massage, then, you can think of foam rolling as a self-massage.introduction-to-foam-rolling-22-638

Why Foam Rolling?

According to the National Academy of Sports Medicine (NASM), foam rolling is beneficial to help alleviate discomfort. For example, if a person does a lot of sitting, then most likely their hip muscles will be working too much. Foam rolling in Bethesda will help the hip muscles to return to a normal state of work. Also, since overworking muscles causes your body to compensate and have poor posture, foam rolling can help to correct bad posture too.

 

 

How Do You Foam Roll?

First, you must determine what muscles on your body are working overtime.  To find this out, I recommend you talk to your local corrective exercise specialist (like me). This could be a physical therapist, personal trainer (who is at least certified as a NASM-CES) or massage therapist , to name a few. They can watch your posture and how you move to determine which muscles may benefit from foam rolling. Typical muscles that need foam rolling include one’s: calves, hips, lateral to mid-back, thighs and chest. For example, if one determines their calf muscles are working overtime, the protocol would be to sit down on their butt with the foam roller placed directly underneath their calf muscles. The person would apply gentle pressure by pushing one of their calf muscles into the foam roller. If they feel any discomfort (discomfort should not be higher than a 7 on a scale of 1-10), they would hold that spot of discomfort for at least 30 seconds to allow the calf to relax. If a person does foam rolling in Bethesda on a regular basis (I recommend 3-5 times/week for four weeks), they could accomplish significant improvement to their tight muscle and posture, which means less discomfort to their body.

Conclusion

Foam rolling is a proven technique that allows overactive muscles throughout our bodies to return to a state of normalcy. If you have muscles on your body that do not feel normal, foam rolling may be the solution. If you are interested in learning more about foam rolling and feel that you could benefit from it, please contact us today for a free movement analysis & foam rolling session TODAY!

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