Foam Rolling Your Muscles

Melanie Douglass with Podfitness, Inc explains what a foam roller is and how you can use it to your benefit.

What is a Foam Roller?

A foam roller is a 6″ circular piece of foam that is used for “self myofascial release”, or “SMR”. SMR is something that many people don’t do—but should. It’s kind of a combination between stretching and massage. It helps to release muscle knots, reduce aches and pains, increase range of motion, and correct muscle imbalances. Most of us aren’t motivated to work out when we are in pain—SMR helps to keep the muscles in proper balance so that you feel good—before, during and after exercise. Ask a Personal Trainer or Physical Therapist to give you some exercise recommendations for foam rolling, or find a foam roller that comes with an instructional DVD or how-to booklet to ensure you use it properly.

What Are the Benefits?

– Reduces muscle soreness, stress and tension

– Corrects muscle imbalances

– Increases range of motion

– Increases neuromuscular efficiency

– Reduces risk of injury

How Do I Use a Foam Roller?

Four exercises:

1) IT Band

2) Hamstrings

3) Piriformis

4) Lats

Steps for foam rolling:

1) Roll each side 1 – 2 minutes, per muscle group

2) STOP rolling and REST on painful areas

3) Hold for 30 seconds

4) Keep abs contracted

5) Continue to breathe

Where Can I Buy A Foam Roller?

For more information visit Podfitness, Inc at or email Melanie at

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