Foam rolling is a self-myofascial release (SMR) technique. It can help relieve muscle tightness, soreness, and inflammation, and increase your joint range of motion.
Foam rolling can be an effective tool to add to your warm-up or cooldown, before and after exercise. And the benefits of foam rolling may vary from person to person.
Read on to learn about foam rolling’s benefits and potential risks, plus how to add it to your routine.
Ease muscle pain
Foam rolling can be beneficial for easing sore muscles and reducing inflammation.
One small study trusted Source of eight male participants found evidence that foam rolling after exercise may help reduce delayed-onset muscle soreness. In the study, physically active men foam rolled for 20 minutes immediately after exercise in addition to 24 and 48 hours after exercising.
These participants saw a decrease in their delayed-onset muscle soreness when compared to exercising without foam rolling. They also performed physical exercises better than those who didn’t foam roll.
Increase range of motion
Foam rolling may help increase your range of motion, but more research is needed. The range of motion is important for flexibility and performance.
Researchers found evidence from one small study trusted Source of 11 adolescent athletes that a combination of foam rolling and static stretching was most effective for increasing range of motion. This was compared to static stretching or foam rolling alone.
More research is needed among a larger, more diverse group of people to fully understand the connection to foam rolling and range of motion.
For best results from foam rolling, try to stretch out and foam roll after each workout.
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