Have you recently started hitting the gym? Do you feel a terrible pain in the muscles after an intense workout session? Are you looking for some ways to improve the quality of your workouts? Are you not able to cope up with the back pain anymore?

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A “Good massage” is the answer to all such questions and many more. It is truly one of the best ways to pamper ourselves and get rid of all the soreness in the muscles. 

And, for this purpose, here comes the foam roller to steal all the pain away. Foam rolling would be the most affordable method to combat constant excessive pain in the trigger areas with the same benefits as a massage does. 

Not only this self-massage saves your valuable time and money that you might spend on visiting massage parlour but it can also be practised anywhere (even at home) as per the comfortability.

Read on to know more about the benefits of foam rolling and how you can use it with ease.

Why foam rolling is important?

Form rolling is a great way to reduce pain, soreness, and tightness of the muscles. It is a type of self-myofascial release (SMR) technique in which pressure is applied to the affected areas (Trigger points) to provide relief from the pain and tightness.

The form roller breaks down the “knots” which are responsible for inducing pain thus gives a feeling of relaxation and get back the muscles to perform their functions normally.

Here are some of the many benefits you can access with rolling the foam.

  • It reduces inflammation in the muscle to enhance the overall performance.
  • It increases flexibility and stretching level so that you can perform different exercises in a better way.
  • It helps in loosening the muscles thereby reducing the chances of injuries during pre-workout. For post-workout, it helps in quickly recovering the injuries.
  • It aids in lowering the cellulite appearance by increasing the flow of blood circulation and oxygen.
  • It reduces back cramps by lowering the stiffness in muscles, used for upper back only.
  • It also prevents the heel pain that you might get after a long tiring day.
  • It reduces the stress level by preventing the tension of the sore muscles.
  • It induces better sleep if performed before going to bed.

The feeling of hurt and pain that foam rolling gives is temporary as you will feel way relaxed after it’s over. Foam rolling is an inexpensive solution which cures muscle strain to increase range of motion resulting in muscles to lengthen, stretch and get back to their normal size. However, foam rolling has to be used correctly otherwise it can be harmful which worsen the condition even more.

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Here I have presented few Do’s and Don’ts to follow while using foam rolling to prevent any future injury and reap the most out of it.

  • Do research before buying a foam roller for yourself. Be clear about the origin of pain for which you are buying it.
  • Don’t put too much pressure on the affected areas as you begin with.
  • Don’t roll fast instead keep it slow and gentle.
  • Do drink plenty of water to stay hydrated as the process of foam rolling will leave you less hydrated. Therefore, keep the water bottle in handy. You can also drink the following drinks to stay hydrated:
    • Lemon water
    • Coconut water
    • Fresh and pure juices without any external preservatives. Consider natural cold-pressed juices over regular juices to obtain more nutrients, vitamins, and minerals.
    • Don’t keep on using it if the pain is unbearable at the end. Visit the doctor immediately in such cases.
    • Do use the correct postures and form.
    • Don’t roll over the joints, lower back, and neck.
    • Do roll around the injured areas rather than directly on it.
    • Do consult with the doctor before and after the foam rolling session.
    • Do not roll for a longer period. Aim for 30-60 seconds on a particular area then move on to the next one.
    • Do take an adequate gap of at least 24 hours between foam rolling workout sessions. Give your muscles some time to heal and recover.

Final thoughts

Always remember the idiom “No pain, no gain”. Hence, you have to go through temporary pain to get strong and relaxed muscles in the long run. Have a good understanding of the correct foam rolling postures and forms. You can seek the help of professionals like a physical therapist or personal trainer who will guide you through the entire process to ensure safety and proper use.

The benefits of foam rolling are countless so you should make it a part of your everyday workout routine and for recovery sessions as well.

Expecting pain after a good foam rolling session is fine but if it doesn’t end or becomes severe then rush to the doctor immediately.

Don’t wait anymore. Roll the pain away with foam rolling!

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