Dancers and athletes have long known the seemingly magical powers of foam rollers. They can help loosen tight hips or knotted quad muscles. Physical and occupational therapists also use them in a number of different ways during sessions with patients. Check out the list below for the clever ways you can use these rollers on your own:
Work out shin splints
If you feel a mild shooting pain in your shins after hitting the track or the trails, you may have shin splints. You can use your foam roller to work out the pain.
Simply kneel on your roller and slowly work it down to your ankle and back up. Make sure not to hit your knees! That could lead you to accidentally hurting yourself, noted Health magazine.
Establish body awareness
Foam rollers can be great for building spacial awareness, especially in children. Simply ask your kiddos to hold one of these rollers above their heads. You can even use it to build your core strength, suggested The Inspired TreeHouse.
Roll away the pain of high heels
According to CBS DFW, wearing three-inch heels can put more than half your body weight on your toes. No wonder your feet and your arches will hurt after a night in heels! If you have a smaller foam roller or a ball, you can give your feet a workout. Stretching your feet can help prevent sharp foot pain and bunions. In addition, a foam roller can stretch out your calf muscles, which can shorten after years of wearing high heels.
Ah, the dreaded cellulite. This is caused by loose bands of muscle in your legs and bum, and fat poking through. Exercise enthusiast and Goop contributor Lauren Roxborough knows that foam rollers can bat away cellulite. How? You can tighten the tissue in this area, which can smooth the skin. She recommended using the roller on the pelvis and on the lower back.
Relax before bed
In order to have a more restful sleep, lay on your back and elevate your legs, or add a foam roller atop several pillows to give your legs an added boost. Simply lie back and slide it underneath the crook of your knees. Put away the technology and crack open a book or a magazine for 20 minutes and take a deep breath. You'll be sure to conk out quickly.
There are so many ways you can use a foam roller. There's no need to spend a lot of money to get one. You can make your own - or have your kids help! All you need is a PVC pipe and some foam. Embrace your creative side and choose a fun print to create your own! Your body will thank you.