I discovered the benefits of using a foam roller a few years back when I had some ITB problems while training for a marathon. While having a deep tissue massage is great for injuries, the foam roller allows self massage and you can hit those tight spots in the comfort of your living room.
- To work the hamstrings sit with one leg on the foam roller and roll down across the roller, using hands to guide you up and down the roller. If you have a tender spot, you’ll find it quickly. Continue for a few minutes then switch legs.
- For the ITB, you’ll lay sideways on the roller and roll from the top of your hip down to your knee. Again, using your hands to guide you. If you have a tight ITB you will definitely feel it and it will be a mix of pleasure and pain. Keep rolling and then switch sides.
- For the quads, lay face down with the roller on one thigh, again, using your hands to move your body up and down across the roll. Switch sides.
A foam roller can be used daily and great to do at the end of the day while you are watching tv or a movie. You can buy foam rollers at Target, Big 5 or other sporting good stores.
Now go run! And don’t forget to roll afterwards!