It may not be an exact substitute for a sports massage, but a foam roller can provide affordable relief when there’s no time to get your muscles tended to by a professional therapist. Foam rollers can be purchased from most sports and fitness stores, and should carry a price tag that fits just about any pocket.
Once you have your foam roller, use these three techniques to get a bit of instant relief without setting foot out of the house:
Get Upper Back Relief
Being bent over a keyboard puts a lot of strain on your upper back. Relief, however, is easy:
Place your foam roller on the floor. Lie on your back with the roller positioned under your shoulder blades. Support your skull by locking your fingers together behind your head. Now push off the floor with your feet, until your buttocks are in the air. Still using your legs, push yourself to roll up and down your back – from your shoulder blades to the middle of your back. Keep doing this exercise for a couple of minutes.
Soothe Your Shins
Shin splints are uncomfortable. They can become painful after a while and usually occur when you’re walking or running.
Position yourself on your hands and knees, with your arms a few inches ahead of your shoulders, and the foam roller under your shins. Now use your hands to shift your weight forward and backward, effectively rolling your shins over the foam roller. Change the angle of the roller to your shins by twisting your body either left or right. This increases the area of contact with the roller, and also the amount of relief.
Keep this up for 30-60 seconds at a time for any given angle.
Ease Your Glutes
Aside from relieving tension and muscular discomfort in the glutes, this exercise will also help relieve tension in the legs – most notably the knees.
Sit on the floor with the roller positioned just ahead of your buttocks. Steady yourself by placing your hands behind you. Lift your buttocks onto the roller, and roll the length of your glutes (use your legs to push backward and pull forward over the roller). You can change the angle of contact with the roller by slightly twisting your body to give treat the entire muscle.
See how good it feels? For more of the same, check back often; we’ll be posting regular self-massage tips to help you when there’s just not enough time to pop in for that professional therapeutic touch. Get in touch.