Use This Great Exercise Tool To Release Muscle Tension…

Foam rolling should be an integral part of anyones’ exercise regimen. It is not uncommon for many individuals to have tight or imbalanced muscles. In fact, this is more the norm than not! This is especially true for muscle groups such as the hamstrings, hip flexors, erector spinae (back), pectorals (chest), and trapezius/levator scapula (upper back). Working out over the years without ever addressing flexibility issues is a recipe for disaster.

Welcome Mr. Foam Roller! A foam roll is an inexpensive, versatile, and lightweight piece of equipment made out of a high-density foam. It can be used to for streching, self-massage, and to perform stability exercises. It uses deep compression to help roll out the muscle spasms and trigger points and to help release tightness in other adjacent fibrous tissues. The compression causes the nerves to relax, loosens muscle, and gets blood flowing, ultimately helping the body to recover. If fact, patients many times feel some relief of their back muscular pain following foam rolling.

Foam rollers are ideal for any setting, including for a home workout. The most common is the 36″ long, 6″ round format. The more inexpensive foam rollers are less dense, which may be more comfortable for individuals who have never foam rolled or who have multiple muscle issues. Unfortunately, these tend to be more easily crushed after prolonged used. Ultimately, it is worth spending a little more on a denser foam roller that will last you much longer.

So, give it a try! Give your muscles the treat they deserve. If you have questions on the specifics on how to use one, contact me and I will forward you an instruction sheet.

Rick Duenas, DC, NASM-CPT