Have you ever tried to exercise with a foam roller? You should definitely try it some time, it’s a great way to add an element of challenge to your usual mundane workout routine and can help you to achieve those uniformly-toned abs so you see in gym ads.
I’d recommend that you start every workout with both a lower and an upper body foam rolling exercise to get your blood pumping before you begin lifting weights
1.Foam RollerExercises for your Upper Back
Before you begin exercising, it is important to get used to the features and contours of your own foam roller. This is especially important if you own a spiked foam roller, which can cause abrasions if used with the wrong technique.
Always start your workout by using your foam roller to knead your neck and shoulder muscles, before you start exercising your upper back. Rest your head on the ridge of your foam roller, if you are using a spiked foam roller and rotate your head from left to right slowlyfor no more than 5 minutes to loosen up your back muscles. This prevents injuries from intense workouts, and is a good way to get used to the hardness of your foam roller, especially if it is your first time using it.
Challenge yourself to do push-ups or planks on a foam roller in sets of 20 push-ups or 30-second planks. Repeat each set at least thrice. This is a good exercise for your upper back as leaning on a foam roller requires balance and therefore places just the right amount of stress on your shoulder and neck muscles without over-utilising them. This is the most best position if you wish to work on your back muscles without causing or aggravating your back soreness.
Place both your hands on the foam roller’s surface, perpendicular to your body, while doing push-ups and make it a point not to let it roll or shift from its place during the workout and even when you are resting in between sets. If you are doing crunches, place the foam roller right above your hip on your lower back. It is important to make sure your foam roller is durable (ie. Preferably not hollow) as doing exercises on your foam roller places a lot of stress on its structure and can cause it to break if it is not of acceptable quality.
Use an ABS foam roller for activities like this.Forcing all the muscles in your upper back and shoulders to work during push-ups is a very effective way to release the knots and tensionin your back without exerting too much stress on these already-overworked muscles, and make for a good upper body workout.
Be sure to take breaks in between to avoid over-exertion, but always keep the foam roller in place as an added challenge
2. Exercises for Your Lower Body
Your legs are just as important. Your quadriceps, calves and even feet need stretching too and this is where the foam roller is a must for your workout. Not only is the foam roller very important in post-workout recovery, it will help you to access muscle groups which are difficult to reach, such as the thighs, during your workout sesson. For thick muscles such as these, it is better to use a spiky foam roller similar to the rumble roller to penetrate the muscles for myofascial release.
The best exercise you can try at home is simply rolling the desired muscle group using your foam roller in order to loosen the muscles in that area. A more advanced exercise you can ty out, which requires your muscles to work harder, is to try balancing on your foam roller while doing normal exercises or even static stretches such as hamstring stretches.