I recently included a foam roller routine into my workouts. Using this inexpensive tool has really helped. I use the foam roller as part of my warm up and cool down with my cycling, strength and running workouts. My foam roller routine focus on the lower body with my back and hips included. I can get a good routine completed in about 5 minutes. My foam roller routine is the first phase of my warm-up. My warm up is structured with:
- Foam Roller
- Active stretching
Why I started Using the Foam Roller
I have been trying to ramp up my running as I get ready for next year's Raleigh 70.3 in June. Last week I think I went a little too hard /too long and now have a sore Achilles tendon. Unfortunately I tend to be that guy that goes out too fast and too far in the beginning. My enthusiasm gets the best of me. I have a hard time pacing myself. So Monday was my normal personal training day at the YMCA with my trainer Kristen. I asked her to develop a foam roller routine as part of my warm-up and stretching routine.
I can tell you that the foam roller routine, although painful for the first time, really loosened up my legs. I really felt good. Now I need to keep at it and get this into a habit that is part of my work-out system. What I did was some basic roller activities, including rolling my IT band, my lower back, my hamstrings and my calfs. I have got to tell you that the IT band stretch was the most painful. Which seems to be common as I researched other routines and information on foam roller routines.
After using the firm black foam roller I went out and purchased a 6 inch 36 inch roller from Amazon. This is the foam roller I selected (I have no affiliate program so the link is just for reference only). This will be a routine for me that will continue.
If you want to see some great routines check out these resources.
- How To Use A Foam Roller - youtube video from Garmin Sharp Cycling Team
- On a Roll - Runners World
- Foam Rolling - The Basics - USA Triathlon
Let me know if you have any other thoughts to share on using a foam roller.