Foam Rolling

Tuesday, February 19, 2013
Before you get excited for me, "foam rolling" is sadly not code for having a good time tossing around on my posturpaedic mattress...
For months now, all the running blogs I read talk about foam rolling.  Now, I'm not a die hard runner but I do walk quite a bit on my treadmill and attempt the occasional jog.  One of the effects of all that work is tight leg and lower back muscles.  I know I should stretch more but ... no excuses, I just don't do it as often as I should.  And I might get around to attempting some yoga moves once or twice a month if I'm lucky.  Since I had to go out anyways, I decided to pop over to the Running Room this morning and ask a few questions.  $60 later I headed home.
I picked up this bad boy in pink.  Yeah, pink; it was the only colour they had.  I actually wanted the smaller, travel size which is only 4" across but they were out.  The salesperson was very helpful, even going so far as to demonstrate one of the moves on the floor (in jeans!).  When I asked if it was going to hurt, she replied "I'm not going to lie to you...".  Yikes.  Heck, if it worked, I could put up with a little ouch.  When I got home, I gave it a go.  The roller comes with (thankfully) a small pamphlet with diagrams showing some of the various ways to use it. 
To start with, I wasn't prepared for how dense and firm the roller was.  There was no give to this 'foam' whatsoever.  I guess that's kinda the point.  The picture above (this is not me!) is the exercise that I need to focus on along with my calves.  Let's just say, I'm going to have to build up to doing more than 30 seconds on either leg.  When I tried to do the calf roll?  I pulled something in my right shoulder. Don't ask.  Do I think this is a good idea?  Definately.  An hour later, and despite just a quick try of some of the moves, my muscles feel much better, loser.
My other purchase was this little torture device. As you know, I have plantar fascitis.  This hard little ball is essentially foam rolling for the bottom of my feet... with little hard prongs.  Also painful but ticklish at the same time, I also felt a difference in the normally tight muscles on the bottom of both of my feet. 
A very productive morning, if I do say so.  Now, I'm taking the afternoon off to rest my sore self.


Barbara Bruederlin said...

It looks like it's not so much the roller that hurts, but the awkward positions you have to get into in order to use it. I had considered getting a roller to help with hip pain, but then I cut down on the frequency of exercising and it went away.

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