Foam Rolling Exercises for Pain Management

If you never tried foam rolling exercises, you might think those people rolling around on the gym floor with foam tubing are crazy. Actually, they are quite smart. Using a solid foam roller to place pressure on knotted muscles, ligaments and tendons feel better than it looks. Because foam rolling is so therapeutic, it can be used by people with or without chronic pain. 

Foam rolling exercises are great for myofascial release. If you have no idea what that means, let me explain. Myofascial release is a low-impact movement that helps contracted muscles to relax, improve blood flow, which in turn, speeds of recovery.

Calves and Ankles

Seated on the floor with legs extended to place the foam roller first behind the ankles. Press some weight down into the foam roller, holding for around 30 seconds. From there, using the strength of your upper body, push into the floor to lift your hips and begin to roll your calves over the foam roller—from the ankle to just below the back of the knee. Feel free to flip over to also massage your shins.


This movement is similar to the calf and ankle roll. Simply flip over and do the same motion on your shins. Roll from your ankles and below your knee.


The process is the same as the calf roll, except you are now rolling from above the back of the knee to the start of your buttocks.


Use this to relieve tense hips. Sit on the foam roller with your knees bent and feet flat on the floor.  Leaning back, using your right hand for support. Then cross your right ankle over the left knee, allowing your body weight to sink into the right hip. Rock yourself forward and back to find the sorest point then hold for about 30-60 seconds. Switch sides.

Back Roll

Place the foam roller horizontally on the floor then lay perpendicular to it. Put your hands behind your head for support. Maintain an engaged core while guiding yourself up and down to massage the entire surface of your back. When you reach a tender point, hold that position for a few breaths or until the pain begins to dissolve.

Spinal Relaxation

Find a foam roller that is about as long as you are from the top of your head to the hips. Perch first on the end the roll down through the spine until fully laying back on the foam roller. Allow the arms and legs, as well as the weight of your torso, to sink into the earth. Relax here, giving yourself a moment to recharge.

Remember to breathe while rolling. You want to treat foam rolling exercises the way you do stretching. Foam rolling exercises might seem bizarre at first, but it works wonders! For more foam rolling exercises

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