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Foam Rolling - is it eye wash?

Foam rolling - is it eye wash?

Mark Keil, CSCS

May 20, 2022

Have you ever thought to yourself: ‘What’s the purpose of Foam Rolling?’; ‘Is this actually worth the little time I have with my athletes?’; ‘Does Foam Rolling even do anything?’.

 

Hopefully this will shed some light on the topic.

 

Foam Rolling is a type of stretching called Self-Myofascial Release (SMR). While there there is still much left to be learned about the benefits of Foam Rolling, here is what we do know:

 

  1. Reduces soreness: Foam Rolling can reduce soreness following exercise (specifically, Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness (DOMS)).
  2. Increases Joint Range of Motion: Foam Rolling breaks up and releases Fascial Adhesions (thereby increasing Joint Range of Motion (ROM)).
  3. Primes the muscles: Foam Rolling helps warm up the muscle.
 

In summary – Foam Rolling is a great way for the athlete to prepare for a workout and facilitate the athlete’s muscular recovery. Further, by increasing a joint’s ROM, the athlete will be able to better utilize their strength and power in sport.

 

This method of stretching should be used before strength training (to warm up or ‘prime’ the muscles) and after strength training (to reduce DOMS and expedite recovery).