People love foam rollers. It’s like getting a cheap, DIY massage. What's not to like?
That said, there are some common uses for the foam roller that aren't wise.
Number 1: Eat it
The flavor is bland and the texture gamey.
Pretty unpleasant really. The only way it’s bearable is by adding copious amounts of salt and Sriracha.
Foam rollers aren’t GMO free i.e. they can’t be good for you. I think foam rollers are made with gluten too because gluten is sticky.
The gluten acts as an adhesive to keep the little chunks of foam from falling apart like my hopes and dreams.
Number 2: Build a house with it
Foam rollers are awesome. They’re also made of foam.
And you know what they say, “Those in foam houses... should probably not have built their house out of foam.”
A house needs stability, stability which a foam roller can’t provide, no matter how many years it spent in med school.
Number 3: Stand on it
I get it. Not everyone can be super tall. But a foam roller is not the answer!
Unless you have circus worthy balance, standing on a foam roller will only bring pain, suffering and shame to you and your entire blood line.
Number 4: Use as firewood
I shouldn’t even have to say this one. I don’t know about you, but I'm not fond of inhaling gaseous foam.
Camping is pretty sweet though. Bringing your foam roller camping isn't the worst thing in the world. After all of that time in the car you’ll definitely want to roll out some shit out.
It may be shaped like a log, but burning it is a bad idea. You will most likely die if you do this.
Number 5: Roll out your lower back
Seriously. Just stop it.
Rolling out your lower back is a lot like masturbating.
It might feel good in the moment but soon after you'll feel worse than you did before, but that won't stop you from doing it again in an hour.
Foam rollers aren’t a cure all.
Back tight? Foam Roll it! Tight hammies? Foam roll! Global warming? Foam roll!
People roll out their low back because it feels “tight”. However, turning your back into a seesaw isn’t going to help with this problem. This puts unnecessary stress on the low back. At best this is unproductive, at worst it actually worsens the problem in the long term.
Typically, when the low back feels tight it’s because of a lack of strength, stability, and/or alignment somewhere else.
Low back tightness is the symptom not the disease.
The muscular system acts like a rope bridge. If one of the cables on the bridge is all loosey goosey a.k.a. not strong or stable, other cables need to become tighter to prevent the bridge from collapsing.
So tight hammies or a tight back could mean you need to do some deadbugs and/or butt squeezes (think of tucking your tail between your legs when you do this).
I’ve had clients lament tight hammies only to drop their palms to the floor during a toe touch like nobody’s business.
If this is you, you don't need to stretch or roll the hammies here.
Sometimes the hammies feel tight because the poor little buggers are working overtime to prevent the bridge from collapsing.
If you want to make the bridge more sturdy you need to TIGHTEN and align the loose cables rather than loosen the tight cables. In other words, you need to get strong in the right postures.
A plank can do the job well here if done with a nice flat back, thinking of tucking your tail in between your legs and squeezing your buttcheeks as hard as you freakin’ can.
So stop rolling out your lower back pleeeeeeease because everytime you do a kitten dies. And nobody wants that. I mean look at this derpy little guy!