I’m a big fan of foam rollering. Sometimes called “poor mans massage” it is the mechanical manipulation of muscle… pretty much what I do on a day-to-day basis, just with a bit less precision. Not as precise, maybe, but it does target tissues that need work on them, which would otherwise not get sorted until you went to see a therapist.
I have been extolling the virtues of foam rollers to various people in my running club – Glossopdale Harriers – for the past few months, and thought it was about time to spread the message, and, more importantly, the knowledge, a bit further than just the people who I regularly run with, or that have come for treatments.
When I first mooted the idea of a “foam roller workshop” I was unsure of what the response might be. I need not have worried. There was a significant number of people who wanted to come along and gain some knowledge and experience of how they could make themselves more injury proof, and potentially give themselves a longer running career.
As the day approached I was getting a little but antsy, but had prepared well, writing down a lot of notes and forming them into some kind of cohesive and intelligible format. I had presented it to the cat a couple of times, and it seemed to go ok, but there is never anything actually like doing it in front of a load of people in running gear, lying on rollers looking at you like what you just said didn’t entirely make sense…
Anyhow. The evening seemed to go off pretty well. It was only ever going to be an hour long at most – any longer than that and concentration does tend to wane. I managed to get in a lot of information about muscles, fascia, how and why we roll, what not to roll and also about general anatomy and physiology.
As I was presenting to runners, the main muscle groups we talked about were on the legs and around the hips. About halfway through the session, although we had a couple of practical rolling bits, I could see some faces start to look a bit glazed.
Handily, I had a secret weapon. During the afternoon I had drawn major muscle groups on Lynne’s legs with a number of different marker pens. She whipped off her trousers (note – she had shorts underneath), and provided an excellent model of where specific muscle sets were, and how to roller them. Brilliant. I think that perked up a few tiring minds, and they were re-engaged into the workshop.
All in all, it was great fun to put on, and I hope that everyone involved got at least some small piece of useful information out of it, and hopefully, they got more than that.
If there are any other running clubs out there that would like the same thing for them, please do get in touch!