Hello hello! Today I want to share with you some of my favorite foam roller stretches that I use on a regular basis. I cannot even begin to tell you how many times I’ve recommended that a client turn to foam rolling to help with sore muscles, tight hips and a variety of other issues. Almost always my recommendation is met with surprise. It seems that even though foam rolling is inexpensive and relatively easy, most people just don’t consider it an important part of their fitness routine. Here’s a few reasons why they are wrong and why foam rolling is a great addition to your workout!
So if foam rolling is so great? How do I do it? Glad you asked! I’ve got some of my favorite foam rolling stretches for you! All you need is a foam roller and a mat for your comfort. I personally love this foam roller for its ridges, the length and its sturdiness.
Upper Back Release
Start with the foam roller on the mat underneath your upper back with your hands behind your head. Bend your knees and place your feet on the mat but keep you glutes lifted off the mat. Gently use your feet to push yourself forward and back along your upper back.
IT Band Roll
Start with the foam roller on the mat just underneath your hip, lying on your side. Cross the top leg over the bottom so your top foot is flat on the mat. Use your foot to help you roll along the length of your bottom leg from the hip to the top of the knee. Repeat on the opposite leg.
Figure 4 Stretch
Lie on the mat and place the foam roller just under your hips and lower back. Take one foot and place it on top of the opposite thigh opening the knee out to the side. Lift the opposite leg up off the mat. Hold here and then repeat on the other side.
Sit on the mat in mermaid position with one foot in front and the other in back with both knees bent. Place the roller to the side of the front leg. Place one hand on the roller. Reach up and over with the opposite hand as you move the roller out away from your body. Repeat 4x. Hold the last rep and then repeat on the other side.
Lie prone on the mat on your forearms with the roller underneath your thighs. Use your arms to help push you forward and back allowing the roller to roll the length of your thigh muscles.
Lie supine on the mat with the foam roller underneath your ankles. Keeping your legs straight, lift one leg straight off the mat into the air and hold behind the leg. Try to keep your hips on the mat and your legs straight. Repeat on the other leg.
Sit with your hips on the foam roller. Extend your legs straight out in front of you with your feet flexed. Extend your arms straight out in front with palms facing down. Tuck your chin and curve through your back pulling your abs in as you reach forward towards your feet. Repeat 4x and on the last rep hold.
Upper Back & Shoulder Stretch
Lie on the foam roller with your knees bent and feet flat and the roller supporting your neck and head. Open your arms out to the side allowing your elbows to bend in a goalpost position and your arms to rest on the mat. Enjoy!
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I recommend including these stretches into your normal workout routine at least once a week to start reaping the benefits of foam rolling!