5 Things NOT To Do With A Foam Roller
Foam rollers are an excellent way to roll out the knots in your muscles. This article provides a few things you should avoid when using the foam roller.
1. Don’t roll for too long
Rolling too long works against injury prevention by increasing inflammation to the tissue. Spend 30 seconds max on a trigger point and 60-90 seconds rolling out the area . Also remember to not roll too quickly. If you take your time, your muscles will be able to let go and relax allowing an increase in circulation, range of motion and flexibility.
2. Don’t hold your breath
Normal breathing allows the massage to go deeper by relaxing your body. It also helps with oxygenating the muscle.
3. Don’t roll over your low back
It can create an increase in pressure on discs and vertebrae as well as causing spinal muscles to spasm / contract as a result of trying to protect the spine. It is best to stay away from this area to avoid injury. Stretch your low back, but don’t roll it. Try rolling out muscles like piriformis, hamstrings, and hip flexors to release the low back.
4. Don’t roll over joints
Don’t roll over bony bits. It may cause joints to hyperextend and cause more pain. Don’t roll over knees, elbow, ankles, hips, and shins. Foam rolling is designed for soft tissue, not joints.
5. Don’t push into pain
We know that rolling can be uncomfortable, but don’t push into pain. You’re more likely to harm than help. If you feel pain, roll over the surrounding areas as pain may be a result from imbalances in other areas. For example, instead of painfully rolling over your ITB, try rolling your tensor fascia latae (TFL) which is the muscle that attaches onto the ITB. It lies from the top of your pelvis to just above the bony prominence just below your hip.
Check out our top 5 foam roller exercises here!