A foam roller is an invaluable tool for health-conscious men and women who enjoy exercising. Consisting of a cylinder-shaped piece piece of foam — either with a smooth or rigid surface — it’s a simple device that offers big benefits. If you’re still skeptical of using a foam roller, check out some of the following benefits they offer.
#1) Reduces Lactic Acid
High levels of lactic acid contributes to post-workout soreness and muscle aches. As explained by Forbes, lactic acid is the byproduct of glucose metabolism. When your body metabolizes glucose, it creates lactic acid. However, lactic acid is also created during intense exercising, including weightlifting and resistance training.
While there’s no way to completely prevent lactic acid in your body, you can keep your body’s levels in check by using a foam roller. Gliding your legs, arms and torso over a foam roller helps to flush lactic acid from your body. As your skin rubs across the roller, it will literally push lactic acid, waste and toxins through your body’s system.
#2) Enhanced Push-Ups
Dubbed the “world’s greatest exercise” by Huffington Post, push-ups target the core, biceps, triceps and even the shoulders. You can perform an enhanced variation of this classic exercise, however, by using a foam roller.
This variation involves placing one or both hands on the foam roller while you perform the push-up. When performed correctly, it will destabilize your body, forcing your core muscles to work extra hard. You can perform a variation of the plank exercise also by holding a foam roller with your hands.
A third reason why everyone should own a foam roller is because it allows for self-massaging. Whether you run, jog, cycle or lift weights, you’ll probably feel sore after working out. This soreness is the result of microscopic tears in your muscle tissue. Normally, the body will repair the damaged tissue within 48 hours, at which point the pain should go away. You can promote faster recovery times and ease exercise-related pain, however, by giving yourself a massage with a foam roller.
The next time you experience muscle soreness after working out, try using a foam roller. There are dozens of different ways to give yourself a massage using a foam roller. If your back hurts, for instance, you can place your back against the roller and gently glide up and down. If your arms hurt, place the roller under your arms and glide it up and down.
These are just a few benefits of owning a foam roller. Because its such a versatile tool, you’ll probably find other ways to incorporate it into your exercise and recovery routines.