Imagine going through the week with all that you have going on, the tiring job, worries about not enough sales, or the code not working well enough. Damn, it’s an unending list. Of course, you deserve better. As a matter of fact, we all do!
You know what, I might have found a way out. No, not for the problems! Come on, there is no way out of them. But yes, just to make sure that you are fit and have your peace of mind during the whole time… How does a massage sound to you? Well, that was a rhetorical question.
A good massage at the end of the day is what we all really crave for! But… I know it’s not possible to get massages every day. To make that amount of time, and efforts, well, that sure does in between our time of lying around.
But I have brought you a beautiful solution to overcome that too. Wait, what? YES! You heard it right.
Now, I know that many of you might already be familiar with foam-rolling and foam-rolling exercises, but are you sure that you are fully aware of its benefits?
Yes, I am getting to the benefits, but let’s be fair to the peeps who are not much aware of it.
What is Foam Rolling?
Well, in simple words, foam rolling is a type of self-practicable therapy that helps you relax your muscles, reduce soreness, improve flexibility and much, much, much more that eventually leads you to healthy living.
So, it’s more like rolling through the pain. Most of us have been through it. Damn, it hurts so bad that you want to stop, but you know that you’ll regret stopping.
Now that we know what foam rolling is, let us know more about how exactly it works? While a lot of people have doubts if foam rolling actually benefits or not, here are a few points that support the fact that foam rolling has a lot to offer.
So, did you know that foam rolling targets the fascia?
Fascia? Ummm, what?
Fascia is a fine layer of connective tissue that lies under our skin and surrounds every muscle and organ in the body.
Exercise or stress causes the muscles to become tight. And the fascia, the connective tissue that surrounds the muscles, starts to thicken and shorten to protect the underlying muscle from further damage.
Sometimes the fascia contracts so much that they form trigger point which further act as sore points that need to be released. Fascia also contracts independently of the muscles it surrounds. It responds to stress without your conscious command.
That is a problem. Why, you ask?
Because it leads fascia to impact your movement whether you want or not. And that’s not it. Did you know that there isn’t a place in your body where fascia doesn’t exist? In other words, it means you can practically use foam rolling all over your body!
If you are still scratching your head thinking, why foam rolling? Here is the long story cut short for you: foam rolling works on your fascia which ultimately helps you relax and leads to your overall wellbeing. Okay, now enough of explaining of the foam roller. Let’s get directly to practicing it.
Let’s first start out with a mobility routine. A routine that will help you work on overall flexibility!
So, the foam roller exercises need to be done 3 days a week, that is almost every alternate day.
Above all, I highly recommend that you buy and use a Rumble Roller as it digs very deeply into our skin, thanks to its little ridges. 😀
How to use a foam roller?
Before we dig deeper into foam roller exercises, here is a brief to help you understand the schedule better.
Exercises 1 – 8 will tackle the lower part of your body, such as calves and shins, your hamstring and quads, your adductors and your abductors, and the outside and inside of your hips.
Exercises 9 – 11 will instead focus on the upper part of your body, such as your back (left, middle and right side), left and right side of your bust, shoulders, armpits, and neck.
So let’s get rolling. Shall we?
Exercise 1: Lower Legs and Calfs
You can start by using one leg at a time or both. It depends on how you prefer to exercise. Take your pick. Exercising with one leg will lead to a higher amount of pressure.
Apply as much pressure with your legs as possible against the foam roller, as you roll back and forth. Do 10 passes over your entire calf musculature with your feet pointing towards the sky.
After 10 passes, it is time to hit the outside of your calves. Point your feet out by externally rotating to one of your sides. Expose the outside of your calves to the foam roller for 10 more rolls, from the lower leg up to the knee. Repeat the same on the other side.
For the inside of your calves, point your toes towards each other, and perform 10 more rolls on the foam roller.
Exercise 2: From Knees to Hips
Just like the exercise we performed before, roll your foam roller from the knees to the hips. You can either hit the back of the legs one leg, or two legs at a time. If you are looking forward to exercising with one leg at a time, put one leg on top of the other leg.
Just perform with all the variations mentioned in the above exercise to cover all your muscles.
Exercise 3: Foam Rolling for Shin Muscles
Get into a push-up position, place your shin against the roller, and roll the shin out again for 10 passes. Perform 10 passes for each leg.
Exercise 4: Foam rolling for quads
Again, get into a push-up position. Roll the quads, with both legs at the same time, by rolling back and forward for 10 passes on the foam roller.
Exercise 5: Targeting Inside of the thighs
The abductor foam roller exercises are a little bit tricky.
Lie the adductors of one leg over the foam roller. Once in this position, roll from the knee all the way up to the crotch. Do this exercise 10 times per each leg.
Exercise 6: Outside of the Thighs
Very similar position to the one used for the previous exercise, but this time, we roll over the abductors instead of on the adductors.
Starting on the outside of the knee, roll all the way up to the outside of the hip, and then come back to the outside of the knee. Do 10 passes of this exercise.
Exercise 7: Outside of Hip
Sit on top of the foam roller and cross the leg as if you were sitting cross leg on a chair. From that position, orient your hip in order to target the outside of your glutes against the foam roller, and roll about 10 times on your right side with the hip open and exposed against the roller.
Repeat for the opposite side.
Exercise 8: Inside Front of the Hip
Place the very top of your leg against the foam roller and either roll up and down, or, preferably, rotate from side to side by rolling your entire hip back and forth against the foam roller.
Exercise 9: Lower Back
Place the bottom of your lower back against the foam roller and roll all the way up to your neck, and then back down. Place your hands on your chest or back behind the head, if you prefer to expose more of your shoulder muscles to the foam roller.
Shift slightly to your left and perform 10 passes on your left side, hitting all the muscles on the left side of the lower back, and then shift to your right side, and repeat.
Exercise 10: Chest and Shoulder
Place your body over the foam roller. Starting on the inside of your armpit, roll all the way down your ribcage towards your belly button.
You will hit your chest, the inside of your armpits, the ribcage and down into your stomach.
Do 10 passes on your right as well as the left side.
Place your body over the foam roller. With the foam roller under your armpits, roll completely on your left side, and then roll completely on your right side, to feel the foam roller working on your lats and on the inside of your armpits.
Exercise 11: Neck
Roll forward until your neck is on your foam roller, place either hands on each side of the foam roller to hold it in place. Look to your left, then look to your right, rolling your neck back and forth over the foam roller.
Wow! You are already through one session. Feels awesome, doesn’t it? I can assure you that this is going to make your life so much fun. I hope you enjoy practicing these foam rolling exercises.
Oh, well, we know so much about it now already, but, if you are still not enough enthusiastic about practicing foam rolling, I am sure the following lines will make sure you are in love with foam rolling!
Super awesome benefits of foam rolling!
- You can practice it yourself
- It requires very little time
- It is as relaxing as a massage, at least for your body!
- Reduces pain and soreness
- Reduces fatigue
- Helps in recovery
Well, that is not it. As much as this foam rolling exercise is easy to include in your daily lifestyle, I am sure that you’ll also love this blog by me on easy and simple fitness tips to heal and feel great.
So, did these tips help? Feel free to let me know about it in the comments below!