Foam Who?!….Foam Roll!!…Yea Baby!!
Hey 9Round Nation! Have you ever needed a massage after going 9 rounds? Well you’re not the only one. We all know (or have heard) that professional athletes get regular massages. These massages help their muscles stay healthy and flexible (along with stretching) which keeps them at an optimum performance level competitively. But how does massage help?
First, the why…
With athletic training, poor posture, or repetitive movements (like extended periods of sitting or an assembly type job), dysfunctions (like weakness, in-elasticity, etc.) are created within the muscle connective tissue which is also known as fascia. Yes, I said it…FASCIA.
Fascia is thin, but very fibrous and strong. Anyone who has skinned chicken breasts or trimmed meat has encountered it; the whitish-colored, thin sheets of tissue between the skin and muscle of the meat. This tissue forms directly under the skin and serves as a strong layer of connective tissue between the skin and muscles underneath it.
Back to the dysfunction…
As the body normally operates it will start to repair these types of “dysfunctions” also known as minor injuries. As part of the body’s extensive repair process, knots start to form within the soft tissue (or fascia) which then becomes inelastic, which contributes to a decrease in blood flow to the area reducing optimal flexibility. In order to get these types of “knots” out of our muscles and optimize its length, our bodies either need regular massages or a foam roller…..SAY WHAT?
I am always down for a massage, but many of us don’t always have the time or money to go to a spa or have someone at our beck-and-call to massage us. Wait for it. Wait for it…..This is where a Foam Roller can really help!
A Foam Roller is a dense cylindrical piece of foam you can buy at any sporting goods store, Walmart, or even online. How to use: the real fun begins! You will need to “roll” on the roller on specific spots of your body. Any tender spot you come across indicates the presence of a “knot.” This is where it becomes invigorating. Once the knot is found keep the roller on that spot for ~30 seconds (or what you can tolerate) to “work out” this area. Foam rolling can be uncomfortable at first but it will become easier the more you do it which proves you are progressing…TA DAAA =)Here is an exercise guide to foam rolling:
http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/finder/lookup/filter/equipment/id/14/equipment/foam-roll (Click the link or copy and paste it in your URL)
Now after you foam roll these muscles, it is advisable to stretch them for ~30 seconds 3-4x to assist with improving your flexibility….YES, FOAM ROLL BABY!! Raise your gloves in acceptance of keeping your muscles healthy in order to keep you kicking butt at 9Round!