Clean Up – Self Myofacial Release

Working out is essential to staying healthy and having a longer livelihood. But exercise alone tends to constrict muscles, create soreness and body aches.

What’s not to love about spring? Flower blossom and crisp fresh fragrance in the air offering a perfect serene and ambience during morning workouts. A morning run in the spring is a very delightful way to start the day.

Working out is essential to staying healthy and having a longer livelihood. But exercise alone tends to constrict muscles, create soreness and body aches. Not everyone can afford a personal athletic trainer or masseuse to massage the soreness, kinks, and our muscles’ tight spots. Nonetheless, there is a way one can massage him/herself with the advantage of controlling precisely the place and amount of pressure to register.

Self myofascial release has gained popularity over the years and is a form of exercise that focuses on specific muscle areas with the aim of releasing the tension. Such exercises employ the use of massage balls and foam rollers among others. Fascia is a layer that covers every body structure such as the blood vessels, nerves, muscles and organs. Trauma or overuse of the muscles causes an overstress that result in tearing of the fascia layers. Improper healing of those tears then leads to the formation of adhesions (spots) that cause discomfort and pain.

These adhesions prevent the muscles from functioning as they should, hence barring the body from exploiting its full potential for fit, natural action. This is where self myofascial release applies. When pressure is enforced on these adhesions, it releases them thus restoring the body back to its optimum physical performance. Aside from relieving these adhesions, self myofascial release also helps prevent injuries, enhance flexibility, release stress from the body, eradicates tightness and knots in the muscles, minimizes soreness from exercises and improves blood flow which aids in quick recovery from a workout session.

Foam roller, ball and yoga block are commonly used for the self myofascial release routine. There are several types of foam rollers on the market for example high density foam roller, PVC piped roller and grids foam rollers. Although the high density roller is the most affordable, it tends to lose shape over a short period of time. The PVC piped roller offers a deeper and more profound intense massage.
Lacrosse ball is the most recommended by mobility trainers and physical therapists for self myofascial release. Things like mismatched socks and yoga block are not really a necessity for self myofascial release but depend on an individual’s preference.

Self myofascial release has become extremely prominent especially amongst fitness enthusiasts and athletes. It is a technique to minimize persistent pain and reintegrate a variety of injuries. However, it is important to know what to do and how to do it because performing it wrong can lead to discomfort and pain if you end up applying pressure on joints and bones instead of the muscle.
Just like performing any other workout, it is important to remain hydrated by drinking plenty of water after an extreme self myofascial release session. The good thing about self myofascial release is that it can be combined with the usual warm-ups during workouts.

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