When Should You Foam Roll?

Self-Myofascial Release (SMR) is a method of self-treatment which will typically involve utilizing a foam roll or some other tool. Other tools can include a lacrosse ball or a massage stick.  

Although the term “Myofascial Release” may be a misnomer (as it does not actually release or change connective tissue) it can have some important benefits.

The two main benefits of SMR are to improve short term mobility and to decrease muscle soreness due to a workout or other activity.  

Utilizing SMR prior to exercise can improve mobility and unlike static stretching muscle contractibility or power is not lost.  If SMR is used after a workout the goal in mind should be to decrease delayed onset muscle soreness that may normally take place.



Dr. Abel Shaw is a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist with the National Strength and Conditioning Association. He is also a Certified Provider of Active Release Technique. Dr. Shaw attended Logan College of Chiropractic in St. Louis Missouri where he completed his Doctor of Chiropractic degree. He has worked with athletes from the Missouri Baptist University, NAIA championship, women’s track and field team and has been the team chiropractor for Mary Washington University Athletics. Dr. Abel Shaw is an Army veteran and has run both cross-country and track and field at Shippensburg University.

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