Foam Roller, SMR and me!
Training and Recuperation – In its simplest form this is how we fight the aging process, improve our fitness levels, manage our weight, and prepare for activities. Most of us are very good about the Training aspect of this approach, but fail miserably on the Recuperation portion. Let’s take a look at what happens during training that makes the recuperation phase at least as important if not more important than the training.
When exercising regularly and at adequate levels of intensity (As One) there is a cost for all of that output. Substrates stored in the body are depleted to create the energy necessary to perform the work. Although the metabolic processes that take place are pretty efficient, they still yield by products that if not removed from the working tissues will alter the environment and ultimately if work is continued without full removal diminish the quality of the tissue. Likewise, the work done damages the muscles directly, this is what the body responds to and tries to build bigger stronger tissue to withstand the work, provided the tissue has the time and the recuperative practices to facilitate the healing process!
This is the main reason for us taking the time at the end of class to foam roller! Your body’s signal for stressed tissues is pain/discomfort. If you are rolling and discomfort is present – that is a sign that the tissues need a little extra help in expediting the healing process. Time off doesn’t necessarily mean that the tissue will bounce back either, because another reaction to training is the tightening down of the musculature in response to the repeated stress created by training. So unless the tissue is massaged and stretched after strenuous exercise, eventually even with adequate rest between sessions the tissues will tighten down. Add in poor sleep, nutrition, etc. and the combination dramatically changes the health of the working tissue.
So, we encourage everyone to not only utilize the time in class to roll extensively (in other words don’t run out! It only takes 10 minutes!!!), but to take the time outside of class to roll on a regular basis. The goal is for your tissue to fully release within each rolling session – this will indicate that appropriate levels of recovery are being met and indirectly reflect a progression forward in your training status.