Ok so this will be my last post on foam rolling I promise! We previously looked at foam rolling to improve physical performance and increase recovery. The offering of such functional benefits are indeed very welcome but I also find foam rolling to offer another, perhaps more mental benefit; promoting relaxation.
Relaxation and recovery are often viewed from the same light.I personally find foam rolling to be a great relaxation and de-stressing tool, where just like conventional stretching, foam rolling can be used as a great way to ease the mind and body. The benefits can be even greater when combined with breathing and in turn helping to activate the parasympathetic nervous system as opposed to activating the sympathetic nervous system such as when foam rolling prior to a workout (It’s interesting how the same action can offer a completely different outcome depending on the purpose and mindset!)
A simple pre-bed routine I perform and encourage my clients to also do, involves the combination of foam rolling and static stretching just before going to sleep. This I find really helps physically heal the body as well as mentally alleviate stress and in effect contributing to improved quality of sleep, leaving you feeling recharged and ready to tackle the day the following morning. The actual foam rolling itself need not to take so long where a quick 10 minutes, even 5 minutes would do (remember even a minute is better than nothing!).
I will go through my pre-bed routine the next post as I have found that it works wonders when improving that all important quality of sleep (where it has also worked well for my clients too!)
So just to wrap things up, foam rolling can be used for a whole host of different reasons depending on what your purpose of use is as well as mindset. The benefits can include improvements in physical performance, increased recovery from training as well as to promote general relaxation.
Just in case you haven’t noticed already, I am a big fan of the foam roller and would encourage everyone else to be the same! In my eyes, it should be a staple household item and just as every kitchen needs a microwave, every living room should have a foam roller.
You also cannot ‘over-foam roll’ so feel free to start rolling as much as your mind and body desires…
Until next time!