Foam Rolling

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Foam Rolling

Postby perseus » Wed Jun 13, 2018 7:24 pm

Obviously not one for those with severe joint problems, but foam rolling seems to work on some on the areas which we have problems with. My physio suggested rolling a tennis ball between my back and a wall which perhaps works on similar principles.

Image

For years, it was regarded as a way of releasing tension from the soft connective tissue known as fascia that forms a kind of matrix around the entire human body – including muscles, bones, organs and nerves.

Researchers have become sceptical about this, however: given the amount of force required to manipulate the fascia, many think it more likely that the pressure applied by foam rolling may be acting on the nervous system instead.


https://theconversation.com/does-foam-r ... 1528902864
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Re: Foam Rolling

Postby *Lisa* » Fri Jun 15, 2018 8:14 am

I knew about the tennis ball as it gets into the trigger points but this is a new one to me so another idea to keep in mind although getting into some positions maybe a challenge.

I was told to stand up against a wall with the tennis ball and try to use it like that but the roller would be working out a position suited for ones abilities.
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Re: Foam Rolling

Postby Painintheneck » Thu Jun 28, 2018 3:21 pm

Perseus, I'd heard of 'Foam Rolling' ages ago and never paid any real attention to the concept. Like many other folks, I'd tried using a ball (a solid rubber type) and never got the knack of doing anything practical with it - it would usually slip from between my shoulder blades and disappear under the furniture. But having paid some attention to your linked article, I thought it might be worth trying. So, in the best traditions of Valerie Singleton on Blue Peter, I shortened an off-cut of plastic drainpipe to 12" and covered it in some of my wife's old foam yoga mat (glued on not with Copydex but silicon rubber sealant).

Y'know what? After recovering for a couple of days from the benchwork involved making the thing, it actually seemed to work when I tried it. I don't mean it just stayed together - when I managed to get in a position of lying on the roller and eventually working out a technique of rocking my whole body back and forth, it felt almost comfortable, in an exquisitely agonising way! Afterwards, after about three minutes, my neck and shoulders seemed a little easier and less knotted. I'll certainly give this another go.
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Re: Foam Rolling

Postby perseus » Thu Jun 28, 2018 7:53 pm

This is what I'm using. It gets less painful the more I use it. The dog wants to join in the fun when I get on the floor.

Image
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Re: Foam Rolling

Postby Painintheneck » Tue Jul 17, 2018 4:18 pm

Here’s some personal follow-up research on ‘Foam Rolling’:

After my initial experiment with a home-made foam roller, I found that in use the drainpipe version tended to squash elliptically. So I got a 30cm length of stronger 4cm waste pipe and wrapped it in four layers of foam ex-yoga mat glued together using silicon rubber sealant. This gave me a roller 7.5cm in diameter.
FR.JPG
This is my DIY roller
FR.JPG (45.36 KiB) Viewed 243 times

Finding a suitable technique for ‘Foam Rolling’ is not easy – particularly for a partially seized-up bloke like me! I found that for my neck and upper back, I have to lower myself very carefully on to the roller (on the floor) and, with knees bent, roll back and forth using my legs to provide the movement. For my lower back I have to be very careful because I have a displaced vertebra. This involves my taking some of the weight of my body on my elbows and using elbows and legs to provide the back and forth movement. An important consideration (for me, anyway) is that upper body clothing such as a tee-shirt becomes wrapped around the roller, so, as I don’t have any tight-fitting Lycra or Spandex singlets (I could never be a ‘mamil’ – middle-aged-man-in-Lycra), I have to engage in this activity bare-backed.

Yes, it’s painful – on my lower back when the roller passes over the displaced vertebra it can be excruciating. But it is becoming easier with each session of ‘Foam Rolling’.

Is it safe? I have no idea! I could see that for some people it might be a very bad thing to attempt – there is quite a perceivable risk that the positioning of one’s body and the force applied to the back and neck could cause severe pain or injury.

Just to satisfy my own personal curiosity I did a few very rough calculations to see how much force I am applying to my back and neck when using my foam roller. This turns out to be about 1.13 kg/cm2.

To try to put this into some sort of context, The National Fibromyalgia Association, in 2005, gave guidance on how much pressure should be used by a trained examiner when carrying out the (no longer used?) Manual Tender Point Survey (MTPS) examination to produce pain in a Tender Point: using just one thumb, a pressure of 1kg is first applied, rising to 4kg over a period of 4 seconds. This gives a loading of about 2kg/cm2. This is more than the loading exerted by my roller on me.

I don’t know if any of my data are technically correct or relevant – probably not. I haven’t taken into consideration the fact that using the roller produces a ‘rolling load’, or that for a lighter or heavier person the loading would be different. All I can say is, I’ve found some improvement in my back pain and flexibility.
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Re: Foam Rolling

Postby perseus » Tue Jul 17, 2018 6:33 pm

It's become less painful with greater use. Whether it will improve or worsen the condition I don't know. I had some myofacial release therapy a few years ago which involved high pressure. I agree though, try this only with caution, and certainly not if you have any other back conditions.
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