Top 6 Benefits of Self Myofascial Release or Foam Rolling


Top 6 Benefits of Self Myofascial Release or Foam Rolling

A lot of gym goers would probably start their workout routine with a warm-up. Yes, fitness experts would definitely suggest to warm-up because it prepares our muscles for the exercises that you will perform. Besides a warm-up, fitness experts also recommend to massage or roll your muscles before starting your workout routine.  Let’s find out why.

Self-Myofascial release (SMR) or foam rolling is a type of soft tissue therapy that focuses on the nerves and connective tissues. According to Michael Clark, CSCS, in order for you to understand the magical effects of foam rolling, you will need a basic understanding of kinetic chain. Our body is a kinetic chain, which works as an integral functional unit. It exists interdependently. If one joint is not working efficiently, then the other joint will compensate, which will lead to muscle imbalances, tissue overload, fatigue, and injuries. Let’s say that you want to perform squat, but your hamstrings are tight which restricts the range of motion. Because of the muscle restrictions, joint motion is compensated, thus sending wrong signals to our Central Nervous System (CNS), which might lead to imbalances, injuries and the like.

According to National Academy of Sports Medicine (NASM), here are some benefits of Self Myofascial Release:

1. Corrects Muscle Imbalances

SMR helps our muscles relax and at the same time provides optimal length-tension relationship, which helps avoid muscle restrictions when we perform an exercise, so it will give a positive feedback to our CNS.

2. Improves Joint Range of Motion

SMR can basically break the knots (which restrict our range of motion) in our muscles, which can help us use our full range of motion.

3. Relieves Muscle Soreness and Joint Stress

SMR speeds up recovery because of better blood circulation in the body.

4. Improves Neuromusclar Efficiency

SMR is good for blood circulation hence, it also provides better oxygenation in our muscles.

5. Relaxes our Muscles

Foam rolling helps our muscles relax by activation of sensory receptors connecting our muscle fibers to our tendons.

6. Provides Optimal Length-Tension relationships

According to Joe Hashey,CSCS, foam rolling lengthens your muscles and breaks up adhesion and scar tissues.

And here are my suggested foam roll exercises before you start your usual routine:

1. Calves

Picture2Place the foam roll or grid under your calf (R) and put your (L) leg on top to add pressure. Lift your hips up then roll (at least 2-4 inches) for 8-10 repetitions or 30 seconds per leg.

2. Quadriceps


Picture4Position yourself in a plank position. Place the foam roll or grid under your quadriceps (both legs) above your knees. Roll from your knees to your hips for 8-10 repetitions or 30 seconds.

3. Hamstrings


Place the foam roll under your thigh (L), then move your hips forward and back to roll your hamstrings with the help of your ankle (flex and extend). Roll it for 8-10 repetitions or 30 seconds. To add pressure, you may put your (R) hand on top of your thigh.


4. Adductors

Picture7Picture8Start with plank position, as seen in the picture, then place the foam roll under your adductors. Then roll towards your hips 8-10 repetitions and extend your knee 8-10 repetitions to add pressure.

 5. Glutes


Place the foam roll underneath your (R) gluteus maximus (meaty part). To add a little bit of pressure, you have the option to place your (r) foot on top of your (L) knee (as seen in the picture), then roll your glutes back and forth for 8-10 repetitions or 30 seconds.


6. Thoracic Spine 



Start with lying position with bent knees. Place the foam roll on your upper back. Place your hands behind your ears to add pressure. Then, lift the hips up and roll for 8-10 (4 inches) repetitions or 30 seconds. Do not place the foam roll on your lower back because it is not recommend.

At 360 Fitness Club, we offer SMRT CORE FLUSH classes that will definitely help you  reduce pain and tension in your muscles, restore your muscle length, and will provide your muscles an optimum joint range of motion. If you haven’t tried it, now  is your chance and surely you will love it.

To try a class, click here: