WHY WE FOAM ROLL AND WHAT ARE WE REALLY DOING?
By rolling daily you will maximize the recovery of your body and optimize the function of your muscular system. It does so by removing inhibitory processes associated with daily stress and strain on your muscles, which is cumulative. This will keep your body stable and limber and most capable to allow you to lead a healthy lifestyle.
Myofascial release is a soft tissue therapy for the treatment of skeletal muscle immobility and pain. This alternative medicine therapy aims to relax contracted muscles, improve blood and lymphatic circulation, and stimulate the stretch reflex in muscles. (Wikipedia)
What are fascial lines or tracts? There has been recent and significant study to detail the fascial connections, which tie together all segments of the body in a flowing and linked soft tissue system that help explain our postures and movements. Eg. Golf Swing, Runner, Dancer, Hockey Player.
Why work on fascia instead of ‘muscles’?
Muscles are actually totally wrapped in fascia, and to a large extent, it is that fascia and receptors within fascia that provide the integrity, stiffness, and or suppleness to the muscles. Simply put, when you make contact with muscle tissue you also affect the accompanying connective or fascia tissues. (Myers) (Massage, ART, Rolfing, SMR) The original dissections that detailed muscle anatomy actually peeled away incredible quantities of fascia to reveal the muscles beneath the entire fascia.
Fascia Lines & Anatomy Trains:
There comes a moment in time when we find a defining or evolutionary book which sends us all down a different path of understanding. Thomas Myers and his anatomy trains is that type of book and person. Thomas has been a leader in the word of body work and fascia for over 20 years, his academy of fascia body workers are of the most finely educated and skilled, the world over. He writes, webinars, and puts on seminars all over the world delivering messages of bodywork, healing, spirituality, and fascia work.
Foam rolling is a unique technique that can restore function to muscles that have lost integrity due to hard training and repetitive movement. By applying the foam roller to involved areas and releasing the soft-tissue, the repair and restoration of full integrity will dramatically allow the athlete to recover faster and maximally allow the muscles to function this will lead to improved athletic performance. The effect of an optimally functioning muscle system means more stability for the athletes. Stability of the muscular system will allow for greater strength, power, stamina, mobility and flexibility, which are all required for the athlete to perform at their best.
Functional Lines: The beautiful contra lateral movement muscles that work to deliver powerful sprinting actions and deliberate tennis strokes or a hockey shot and volleyball spike. These fascial lines tend to operate best with the upper and lower crossed syndromes resolved or mostly treated, as well as the other fascial lines are working well. When the functional lines are optimized, we find the results of the best athletes putting on tremendous shows of power and movement. It is not the absence of the other lines or the dominance of the functional lines, rather the large cross body power development which gives the functional lines there big role in big movement.
Here are some reasons we need to foam roll your body:
1. Optimal Wellness can happen at any age, you just need the right tools and the right attitude! The Travel Roller® is not just for young athletes but all ages. By rolling daily you will maximize the recovery of your body and optimize the function of your muscular system. Learning to take good care of your body by self-therapy is a great way to achieve optimal wellness. Foam rolling using the Travel Roller® helps to remove the inhibitory processes associated with daily stress and strain on your muscles, which is cumulative. So, for those of you who have put in many years of hard work, athletic training combined with life stress and injury the toll could be very large. That why its so important to just start rolling as much as you can to get o the road to recovery and wellness. This will keep your body stable and limber and most capable to allow you to start leading a healthy lifestyle.
Benefit from improved flexibility and posture and optimal wellness. Using the Travel Roller® in combination with the acupressure balls and flexibility band you can start feeling more energized, mobile and youthful in just 5 mins a day.
There are many different ways you can use the Travel Roller, against a wall, calves on a coffee table and progressions with our acupressure balls that can help you feel optimal wellness on a daily basis. Go to the How to Roll page for more information.
2. The Travel Roller® is Dr. Recommenced by many of the top physiotherapist and chiropractors. Foam rolling is an excellent tool to release soft-tissues to aid in the recovery of injuries. By repairing the areas of injury it can dramatically speed recovery and completely restore function of the involved muscles. Given that most injuries are an effect of cumulative micro-trauma, foam rolling can also assist in preventing injuries by controlling the trauma that does occur and correct the problem before it escalates to impair body function or develop a symptomatic problem. It further can be used as a screening tool to monitor evolving problems that we are quite often unaware of.
Having good blood circulation is critical for having healthy tissues. Foam rolling constantly allows constant exchange of nutrients and wastes at the cellular level, which is also an amazing reason why you should be foam rolling. An important part of keeping the immune system healthy is creating a healthy flow of fluid through the lymphatic system.
If you experience stiff joints and muscles its also important to keep a steady blood flow to these tissues. You can create more oxygen in your tissues, especially the ones that are lacking blood supply and need a turn over of cells and removal of wastes. Those sore, tight and painful muscles may be a sign that your body needs attention and its time to get rolling! Your body will thank you!
Alot of people complain that they have weak glutes or their muscles hurt. Well the good news is that maybe your glutes are just fine, but they may be inhibited. Do you wonder what this means?! Here is why the Travel Roller is Dr. Recommended over other foam rollers.
If you feel your glutes weak or are they inhibited then watch this helpful video with Dr. Emmons to learn more now!
3. Tone your body and strengthen your core, glutes and shoulder muscles while rolling away tension.
The Travel Roller is an amazing way to tone your body not only by foam rolling through sore muscles and kinks but it also has a secondary benefit that its a great core exercise. Imagine that, you can get a massage and work out at the same time, amazing!! Well we don’t actually recommend that foam rolling be your entire workout, but it definitely will warm up your core as you dynamically move your body around the Travel Roller. The amount of front bridging, side bridging and planks can really add up into a whole lot of planking. And we all know that planking is amazing for training your transverse abdominus muscles and strengthening your core from the inside out! By supporting your body on your shoulders, wrists and glutes you can also build some serious upper body stability and strength!
You can effectively strengthen your shoulders, glues and core by maneuvering yourself around on the ground daily in an alternating glute bridge, and plank core positions.
4. Improved mobility & stability
Travel Roller® Simplified Theory:
- We are born with correct alignment, ideal squat patterns and pain free bodies!
- Body joints are designed with a natural alternating pattern of mobility (m) and stability(s): foot(s), ankle (m), knee(s), hip (m), lumbar/core(s), thorax (m), scapulo-thoracic(s), glenohumeral (m)
- How does this natural alternating pattern breakdown? Trauma, Thoughts, Toxins, Technique. All leading to asymmetries, mobility loss, decrease in joint range of motion, and injury as the fascia compensates, thickens, and starts to turn the muscles from elastics into straps! This all leads to neuro-muscular conditions of inhibition and dysfunction. Luckily, fascia is like plastic and can be released with effective manual compression in combination with reduction of the cause(s) (four T’s)!
- Without mobility, stability is not possible! Mobilize ankles, hips, thorax, and gleno-humeral joints!
1. Myofascial treatment from experts! Seek skilled physiotherapist, massage therapist, chiropractors and healers.
- A non-deforming ergonomically correct body roller that can be used to self-treat the entire body and can be taken everywhere… Travel Roller!
- Corrective strength and flexibility training from a movement specialist/trainer or coach!
More on Mobility & Stability continuum:
An important piece in understanding the functional dream, to oppose the upper and lower crossed syndromes, is the correct altering stability mobility paradigm as originally discussed by Gray Cook. This is a modern understanding of the human body, joint by joint, allows us to understand that the most functional bodies contain an alternating pattern of stability and mobility from joint to joint. Starting with the feet which are ideally stable, the ankle – mobile, the knee – stable, the hip – mobile, the torso – stable, the thoracic spine – mobile, the scapula – stable, the shoulder – mobile, the elbow – stable, and the wrist mobile. As anyone of these joints loses its full mobility or stability, it causes a compensatory dysfunction on either side of its connections within the body, and potentially beyond across all aspects of the body.
As we look to optimize this theory of ideal mobility and stability within the body, we find ourselves looking towards optimizing mobility with self myofascial release and completing stabilization and corrective exercise on the other aspects of the body. Any over use of the mobilizations without the appropriate and balancing stabilization work would unbalance the ideal alternating patterns.