Foam rolling is sometimes known for "hurting so good."
Foam rolling can help your body to achieve myofascial release, the process of separating muscular fibers and re-establishing the integrity of the tissue, therefore allowing the muscles to separate, relax, and become more flexible. It is great to do before a workout to prepare the body. It can lengthen and warm your muscles, which can improve performance. It is also a great idea to foam roll after a workout to help with recovery, increase flexibility, and reducing Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness (DOMS).
Sometimes people will use a foam roller because they have heard about it from a friend or they have seen others at the gym using it. Sometimes simply stretching or massaging the area is actually best and will lessen risk of injury.
When done improperly, foam rolling can actually hurt you (and not in a good way).
Like any other recovery method, find what works for you. Be safe with your movements and target locations, and stop if you feel something isn't right.
This article was published in a past edition of the Healthy U @ Work newsletter from Franciscan WorkingWell. Courtesy of Complete Wellness Solutions. WorkingWell is a network of occupational health services and part of Franciscan Health. With locations in Northwest Indiana and Greater Indianapolis, WorkingWell's team of professionals provide high-quality medical care to business and industry, with a primary goal to work closely with employers to ensure employees are “working well.”