What is foam rolling and is it really that important?

Avidkeo Posts: 3,190 Member
I've started slowly increasing my running as I gear up to a half marathon in November. I did at the beginning of the year have a calf strain that I ensured I rested and have been problem free since. Currently I'm not experiencing any issues at all, I ensure I stretch after runs etc. I keep seeing posts about foam rolling, how you must do it etc.

What exactly is it? And how important is it?


  • Neiross1
    Neiross1 Posts: 42 Member
    This is just an educated guess.

    Without knowing what is causing your calf strain who knows. Is it bad running patterns, over use and or an old injury. Foam rolling/stretching are only going to help if they fix the cause of the strain. You might feel better after but you need to deal with the source of your issue and not the symptoms.

    Best of luck.
  • Avidkeo
    Avidkeo Posts: 3,190 Member
    Ok it looks like I need that in my life! Started a new strength training program Saturday and I'm sore!
  • TavistockToad
    TavistockToad Posts: 35,719 Member
    I have used a roam roller for a tight glute and if my hamstrings/quads are particularly tight.

    It's not a regular thing but a very thorough stretch definitely is!
  • Cherimoose
    Cherimoose Posts: 5,210 Member
    It sounds like you already decided, but most people find that simply moving/stretching throughout the day after exercise reduces soreness better than foam rolling - which tends to be downright painful. There's also some question whether the other touted benefits of foam rolling are that great compared to other strategies. It's kind of a trend now, so it's hyped up, but people ran for ages without it.

    Calf injuries & reinjuries are often prevented by increasing calf elasticity (through frequent stretching) and by increasing exercise slower. But i suggest seeing a sport physical therapist for a full-body assessment, including a running assessment. They might find issues elsewhere that are causing your calves to be overworked.
  • dewd2
    dewd2 Posts: 2,449 Member
    edited June 2018
    Technically I do not believe there is any evidence that they do anything significant. However... :D

    I have several and use them often. They make me feel better and therefor they are good.

    Having said that, if you are not having issues then there's no point in trying anything new.

    Good luck with your half. Remember to ease your way into it and take days off as needed and I am certain you will do well.