Why Use a Foam Roller?
After a hard training session, a long road run, or a few hours on the court, you may find your muscles and joints a little sore when you wake up the next day. Taxing our muscles and pushing our physical limits is awesome, but if done on a regular basis, we may need to give our bodies some TLC to continue being able to excel in the days to come.

Lately, foam rollers have become popular, coming in all different sizes, levels of firmness, and colors. There is a reason for their new-found trendiness: Foam-rolling is recognized as benefiting muscle recovery. When you foam roll, otherwise known as self-myofascial release, you create pressure with the roller along the myofascial connective tissues in whatever muscle group you are targeting. Fascia is tough, thin connective tissue that wraps most of the structures in your body, including your muscles; the fascia is what supports and protects these structures. Self-myofascial release is often applied to different areas of the legs, as well as the upper and lower back. This technique is most effective post-workout when your muscles are still warm and a bit more pliable. When trying to roll out "cold" muscles, you may find the experience to be much less desirable. However, if you have a job where you sit for a good part of the day like I do, I like to keep a roller by my desk for taking a free moment to roll out my legs after sitting for a while.

Although self-myofascial release can be a little painful, the benefits of regular maintenance can ultimately alleviate soreness in muscles, inflammation, and improve joint flexibility in the process. Ignoring these overworked parts of your body can lead to poor performance and possibly injury. Self-maintenance is our most valuable tool as healthy and fit individuals, so before you head home after your workout, grab a foam roller and roll out!