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Athlete Recovery: A Great Cheap Alternative to Pricey Massages

November 26th, 2013

The benefits of foam rolling

I discovered foam rolling while training for my half marathon. I needed massage on a regular basis, but didn’t want to shell out $100+ every week. Massages are beneficial, especially for recovering from intense exercise. However, it is impractical for most of us to pay that much money each week. This is where foam rolling comes into play.

Foam rolling is an excellent alternative to a deep tissue massage. This gentle form of massage will help get out any kinks. In addition to relieving tension and soreness, overtime, the roller will help break up scar tissue and adhesions.

I purchased the 36 inch Gaiam Foam Roller at Target for under $30. The size and style of this roller allows me to concentrate on specific areas of the body that need trigger point massage. The foam roller is ideal for use after weight training or endurance cardio. I mainly use it after my weight training sessions and sometimes after a difficult hill run.

When you buy the foam roller, you will also receive an instructional DVD with a few easy guided rolling movements. You can also search for your own workouts on You Tube. Another benefit of foam rolling is that each session only lasts about 10-15 minutes, compared to at least an hour for a massage. You get the same benefits, without losing your time.

I use this after my workouts to help speed up recovery time. Just like a regular massage, the foam roller will help to increase circulation and rid the body of excess lactic acid. Lactic acid is what causes your body pain after a workout; using the roller will help with post workout soreness. $30 compared to $100+ on each massage: I’ll take the foam roller!

Have you ever used a foam roller? Do you find it easy to incorporate into your training plan?

What do you think?

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