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Foam Rolling

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Foam Rolling

FOAM ROLLING- Lakeside Chiropractic in Joondalup

Why Should I Foam Roll?

Fascia is a connective tissue which runs throughout the entire body, encapsulating muscle fibres, bones, nerves, blood vessels and organs providing a framework for the body. Our body is made up of 60-65% water – the fascia is the structure which organises the water into a structured network. Similar to the thin white layer which encases an orange segment and holds all of the juice, the fascia envelopes our muscles and slides and glides with every movement we perform. When our fascia system is not working as optimally as it should be it can manifest as tightness, pain, an inability to maintain good posture and restricted movement. A sedentary lifestyle, poor posture and poor work ergonomics can lead to tightening and shortening of the fascia.

Foam rolling is a self-myofascial release technique which can be incorporated into your warm up and cool down routine, before and after exercise. Some of the potential benefits of foam rolling include:

foam rolling on floor

1. Eased Muscle Pain

Foam rolling causes a number of changes at a physiological level which may help ease muscle pain. Ways in which it does this is by:

  • Promoting rehydration and enhanced fluid circulation to the connective and fascial tissues within the muscles, allowing better nutrition supply and therefore self-healing
  • Smooths out micro tears in the fascia
  • Releases trigger points in the muscles
  • Supports blood flow and distribution to the area

2. Increased Range of Motion- increased movement

A combination of foam rolling and static stretching was found to increase range of motion which is important for flexibility and performance. For best results, aim to foam roll and stretch after each workout. Foam rolling aims to increase range of motion and flexibility by:

  • Applying pressure onto the fascial structures and causing movement between the different layers to release adhesions and increase mobility and flexibility

When Should I Foam Roll?

Foam rolling is an excellent way to reduce muscle tension at the start and end of an exercise routine. If you have a job which involves lots of sitting or standing all day, you may also find that foam rolling in the morning and evening may be a great way to relieve muscle aches and pains. It is important to always speak to your chiropractor at Lakeside Chiropractic about whether foam rolling is a good option for you, and how often you should be foam rolling.

foam rolling on floor

How Do I Foam Roll?

It is important to note that using a foam roller, particularly if you are already experiencing muscle pain and tension, can be quite uncomfortable. It is important to begin foam rolling gently and slowly progress until the pain eases and you are comfortable using a foam roller. It is normal to feel discomfort, but you should not push past the point of discomfort into genuine pain, otherwise you risk injuring yourself.

To foam roll, use the following steps as a guide:

  1. Find the tight or tender area of your muscle
  2. Slowly lower your body onto the foam roller in a controlled manner so that the painful point is centred on the foam roller
  3. Hold this position for 30 seconds – the pressure alone provides great benefits, but you can also slowly roll up and down to further ease the tension in the area.
  4. Continue to move along the muscle with the roller, being mindful to stop and hold on the areas which may need more focus.
  5. If this is the first time using a foam roller, experiment with different body positions that you find the most effective for yourself.
  6. An important note is to maintain slow and steady BREATHING – foam rolling can be painful and people can often forget to take long deep breaths.

foam rolling chart

The depicts how a foam roller can be used for different troublesome muscles in the body.

Foam rolling is a fantastic way to ensure maintenance of full and pain free range of motion throughout the entire body. If there is restricted range of motion in one body region, this will result in forced compensation and suboptimal movements in the adjacent joints. A consult with your chiropractor at Lakeside Chiropractic may be an excellent start in identifying problematic muscles and restricted joints to put you on the path to achieving greater range of motion and decreased pain. Feel free to give us a call on (08) 9300 0095 or head to our website to book yourself in!

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September 23, 2021
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Dr. Linda Schiller

Dr Linda Schiller has over 25 years work experience and has been a practicing chiropractor in the UK and South Africa since 1998, you can now access her chiropractic care in Joondalup, Northern Suburbs Perth, Australia, to get you back on the road to health.