Guest Author - Terri Johansen
This is a review of the OPTP Pro Foam Roller; the full round 36” x 6”, blue marble roller with a firmer density.
I use the Blue Marble OPTP Pro Foam Roller which is very firm but still comfortable. I began using it as a relaxation device. Lying it on the floor I would stretch out on my back with the roller centered under me. It is important that your head is completely on the roller so you don’t cause neck pain or injury.
Upon first lying down the contact was slightly uncomfortable. But I quickly discovered it didn’t last very long. Practicing a slow deep breath my body began to relax and I allowed myself to sink into the support of the roller. This is when I experienced the most wonderful feeling of relaxation. Now I often use it for this purpose.
I purchased the book “Pro-Roller Pilates Challenge” by, Angela Kneale, OTR. This book showed me a whole new way to use my pro foam roller and I developed a new appreciation for it. Using the foam roller to perform exercises is quite challenging and fun. It takes some practice to perfect the balancing factor but you will want to develop this as it provides strength and stability for your core.
Many trainers and physical therapist use the foam roller as a means to relieve muscle tension. You may be able to reduce pain in tight muscles and fascia when using the roller, as it can provide benefits similar to a massage.
Some of the uses for Foam rollers are:
•A cool down after your workout providing flexibility benefits
•Back pain relief
•Improvement of balance, strength and coordination
•Alleviation of soft tissue tension
•Self-massage technique by applying constant and gentle pressure into the muscles
•Relief of sciatic pain
Here are some movements to try using the foam roller to relieve back pain:
•Place the foam roller in a secure position on the floor. You don’t want it rolling away from you.
•Sit on the end of the roller with your feet flat on the floor and on each side of the roller. Slowly recline resting your back on the roller keeping your head and neck completely on the roller.
•Check your alignment; are your head and backbone in line?
•Take deep slow breaths and allow your body to relax sinking into the foam roller as you let it support you.
•Place your arms and hands on the floor on either side of the roller to stabilize your balance.
•Inhale and lift your pelvis and lower back off the roller lifting all the way up through your mid-back.
•Exhale and slowly roll back down into the starting position. Repeat this movement 8 times.
Side to Side Massage
•Start in the same beginning position as above.
•Roll your body to the right allowing it to be totally supported by the roller. Rest here for 1 minute then roll to the other side.
•Roll to one side and sit up. Remove the roller.
•Place the roller horizontally under your shoulder blades.
•Don’t let your head hang. You can use your hands for support or place a pillow under your head and neck.
•Tenderly roll the foam roller up and down in the mid-section of your back.
•If you feel a sore spot, and it is not too painful, hang out there. Let your body settle into the roller and hold the position helping the soreness to ease.
Hip Flexor Massage
•Now roll onto your stomach keeping the foam roller horizontal.
•Place it in the area under your thighs and pelvis; this is called the hip flexors.
•Breathe deeply and let the weight of your body drop into the roller.
•Tight hip flexors can contribute to lower back pain.
I love my OPTP Pro Foam Roller and highly recommend it for exercise and relaxation.
Always check with a medical professional before starting or adding any new exercise. Be healthy, be happy!
This review of the OPTP Pro Foam Roller is based on my specific experience. I purchased the roller with my own funds for personal and review purposes.
•The Foam Roller Workout, Prevention
•Using a Foam Roller for Back Pain Relief, Livestrong.com
•Pro-Roller Pilates Challenge, Kneale
To Purchas my EBOOK click here: Exercise Basics