Foam rolling or Self-Myofascial Release (SMR) is an integral part of the Redefining Strength training program because it is essential for getting the most out of your workout and preventing and alleviating injury.
SMR or foam rolling is basically a form of self-massage to loosen up muscles and restore them to their proper length-tension relationships.
Any good workout program should start with foam rolling because it inhibits the tight muscles and gets them to relax so you can stretch them.
Self-myofascial release (SMR) does this by “autogenic inhibition.” Basically what that means is that the pressure you apply with your hands or a foam rolling tool (roller, ball or such) on the tight muscle forces the muscle’s own receptors to relax it.
Foam rolling has the following benefits:
- Corrects muscle imbalances
- Improves joint range of motion
- Relieves muscle soreness and joint stress
- Increases extensibility of musculotendinous junction, giving you more flexibility and a full range of motion
- Improves neuromuscular efficiency aka a better mind-body connection
- Maintains normal functional muscular length
The basic guidelines to foam rolling are – find areas of tightness and hold on those areas until pain lessens a bit and use the smallest hardest tool you can to dig out those areas.
At Redefining Strength, you will learn techniques to roll out from head to toe. You will learn how to use different SMR tools so that no matter what you have on hand, you can always roll out and loosen up. We will also teach you which tools are best to use to reach certain areas of tightness.
Check out these resources to get you started: