If you have a sore back, it’s probably time you invested in a solid and durable back roller. A good back roller digs into your muscles to release tension and alleviate soreness, without causing any unnecessary pain. This means that it should have a few features designed especially for your back, such as a ridge for your spine to rest on during foam rolling sessions.
The best foam rollers are ones which are durable, effective and versatile enough to match the needs of their user.
Consider getting a spiked roller if you have permanent knots in your lower back, but do also consider other types of foam rollers such as grid rollers which have distrodensity zones to accommodate different levels of intensity and different muscle groups.
1. Foam Roller Warmup and Cooldown
Before you begin any exercise, it is important to have yourself warmed up and ready. Why not try warming up with the help of a foam roller?
Unlike static stretching warmups which are boring, draining and just inefficient, foam roller warmups are challenging and effective because they are dynamic. Warming up is more than just a few basic stretches for your hamstrings and back.
They are very important, especially if you already suffer from back pain.
One innovative way to increase blood flow and relax your muscles with an added challenge of balancing, is to use a foam roller. You can stretch your hamstrings while standing on a foam roller, or do a few push-ups and crunches with your hands and back on the foam roller.
Cooling Down with a Foam Roller
Cooling down after an intense workout is arguably more important than warming up, as it drastically reduces the risk of post-workout injury.
Using a foam roller to facilitate movement and help you you’re your post-workout stretch can help to release permanently contracted knots in your muscles so that you can retain that large range of motion you need for workouts in future.
Proper warmups and cooldowns prevent delayed-onset muscle soreness and are very important if you already have a sore back.
2. Simple Neck and Back Exercises with a Foam Roller
Don’t neglect your back.
When trying to identify the source of muscle soreness, it is best to start from the neck and work down to the lower back. Start your foam rolling exercise by resting your head on your foam roller. Rotate your head from left to right for 2-3 minutes to stretch your neck muscles.
Now we can begin with the actual exercise.
One way to relieve back soreness is to force your back muscles to contract and relax without engaging in any back-related activities. For example, you could do push-ups or plank on a foam roller, which requires balance and therefore places an adequate volume of stress on your upper back and shoulders without injuring them.
Place both your hands firmly on the foam roller while doing push-ups and be very sure not to let it roll or shift from its place throughout the exercise. A
s your hands are no longer on the flat surface of the floor, this demands a lot more from the muscles in your back and shoulders to maintain a fine balance.
Forcing all the muscles in your upper back and shoulders to work during push-ups is an effective way to release the knots and tension without exerting too much stress on these already-overworked muscles.
Be sure to take breaks in between to avoid over-exertion
3. Foam Rolling Exercises
This should be rather self-explanatory. Foam rolling along the sore muscle group is the most direct and remains the most effective way of alleviating muscle soreness, particularly in the lower back. However, it is important to ensure that you do not injure yourself by pressing against your spine, or by rolling over the same area for more than 3 minutes.
Start by rolling over the area slowly and increase the intensity only if you are comfortable with the pace of recovery.