If you’ve been in a gym lately, you’ve likely seen a foam roller. Unfortunately, many people are intimidated by these simple tools, and don’t know how or why they should be incorporated into their daily routine! Here’s a list of 5 of the health benefits of foam roller exercises, and why you should be doing them:

Man Lying on a Foam Roller While Doing an Exercise

1. Foam rolling can increase flexibility and joint range of motion. New research shows that foam rolling before exercising can lead to an increase in overall flexibility, improving your workout.

2. Foam rolling can provide better circulation for your body. Blood is in charge of carrying oxygen throughout your body, so good circulation is a vital component of overall health. The myofascial release that foam rolling provides helps improve circulation by  breaking up the tight areas in muscles where blood flow may become restricted.

3. Foam rolling can reduce stress. Foam rolling after a workout can help reduce the stress your body just endured. The myofascial release can also lower cortisol, the stress hormone, in your body.

4. Foam rolling can reduce exercise-related soreness. No matter what type of exercise you do, you’ve likely experienced delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS). DOMS is the pain and stiffness you feel after an intense workout that sets in about 24-48 hours after a workout. Foam rolling after a workout can significantly reduce that soreness so that you can go about your day without wondering why your muscles hate you…

5. Foam rolling can help prevent injury. Consistently using a foam roller before workouts has been proven to prevent injuries associated with muscle tightness and overuse. However, never foam roll over an inflamed area!

Now that you know the benefits of foam rolling, check out this great video for a comprehensive foam rolling routine.

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