6 Best Foam Roller Stretches for Sore Muscles (Pre Workout)

6 Best Foam Roller Stretches for Sore Muscles (Pre Workout)

A foam roller is a must-have and it’s a tool we use on a daily basis in our Towson office. Using a foam roller will help with soft tissue release before your workout or athletic endeavor. Foam roller stretches are a simple and effective way to help with discomfort and pain in almost any muscle group.

Use a foam roller to stretch before a workout to give your muscles a better resting tone so they can do their job better and support your joints better. Foam roller stretches will also decrease tension and discomfort while giving you better efficiency in your workout. In this video, Dr. Warren demonstrates exactly how to do each of these 6 foam roller stretches before your next workout. You’ll see Dr. Blake use a black foam roller which is very firm. If you’re going to purchase a foam roller, we recommend getting a foam roller like this one which isn’t quite as firm.

Best Foam Roller Stretches For Sore Muscles

You can use a foam roller on just about any part of your body and in the video, Dr. Warren demonstrates each section of the body working from the ground up. Doing these best foam roller stretches for sore muscles only take about a minute on each side and afterward, you’ll feel looser and have less discomfort.


1. Calf Foam Roller Stretches

While sitting on the floor, rest your legs on the foam roller and cross your legs. Then, raise yourself up with your hands and roll back and forth over the foam roller. If that’s too difficult, you can do it with just one leg at a time. There are multiple muscles in the calf area so you want to make sure you reach all of them by foam rolling with your leg turned in and then with your leg turned out. Your foot should be as loose as possible to get the best results. 

When you find a tight area or find sore muscles, stop and extend and flex your foot with your leg as relaxed as possible. Roll onto your side to work the muscles on the side of your calf. These muscles are responsible for being able to lift your foot and bring your toes toward your shin. Spend about 1 minute on each side.


2. Hamstring Foam Roller Stretches

Staying in the same position, roll the foam roller back and forth across your hamstring area turning the foot in and out to make sure you get all of the muscles. Spend a minute on each side.

When you roll to your side, you’ll want to support yourself with your arms. When you’re working on your left side, support your weight with your left forearm flat on the ground and place your right arm in front of your body to stabilize yourself. Take your right foot and drape it over your left leg. Again, spend about a minute here rolling and finding 3 areas that have tension to pin and stretch. Repeat this on the other side.

Don’t forget to foam roll the front of your thighs as Dr. Warren demonstrates as well. You want to make sure you’re getting each side of the muscle group you’re working on for the best possible results.


3. Glute Foam Roller Stretches

In order to foam roll your glute muscles, you’ll spend a minute on each hip. When placing the foal roller, make sure you’re not rolling on the bony part of your hip. You want to roll the muscles, not the bony area. 

Roll with your hip opened slightly so you’re rolling the outer edge of your hip. Support yourself with your feet as Dr. Warren shows rocking back and forth with arms behind you. When you find a tight area or find sore muscles, stop and slowly bring your knees together to stretch the area and release tension.


4. Lower Back Foam Roller Stretches

This is a sensitive area so it’s important that you take it easy and do not rise up on the foam roller. Instead, use it to roll the outer edge of your back. The foam roller should sit just above your belt line. 

Gently rock back and forth slowly. Focus on the muscles to either side of the spine, not over your spine directly. Spend a minute on each side of your lower back which should be able 10 rocks back and forth.


5. Thoracic Spine Foam Roller Stretches

With the foam roller behind the upper part of your back, place your hands behind your head in a sit-up position to support your neck. Lift your hips and roll up and down over the middle of your spine. Be sure to take this nice and slow relaxing as much as you can. If you want to get muscles closer to the edge of your back, just turn your shoulders and roll up and down the shoulder blades on each side.

In order to foam roll the sides for your thoracic spine area, you’ll turn to the side and roll along your rib cage. Be sure to support yourself but don’t overcompensate and force yourself up off of the foam roller. Gently roll this area because it is sensitive and you don’t want to hurt yourself. If you want to pin and stretch as we’ve shown in other areas, find a tense area and pull your bottom arm up with your other arm to stretch the area.

The last side to work on in this muscle area is your front. To foam roll your pectoral muscles, lie on your stomach, and use your hands to roll yourself over the foam roller nice and gently. 


6. Forearm Foam Roller Stretches

This one is easy. With the back of your arm on the foam roller and your other arm supporting it, roll the muscles in this area nice and easy for 60 seconds. Just like with other areas, when you find an area of tension you’ll want to stop and flex your wrist to stretch the muscle. Flip your arm so your hand is facing down and repeat to stretch the wrist flexors.

These are 6 of the best foam roller stretches for sore muscles and they should create a good hurt but not be uncomfortable so don’t make it uncomfortable on yourself. After you finish you shouldn’t feel pain, you should feel a little looser. 

We highly recommend doing foam roller stretches before doing a workout or participating in any athletic activity. Be sure to follow your foam roller stretches with full-body movement for maximum impact.

These foam roller stretches are just one of the things we do with the athletes that come into our office to support them and help them feel better faster. If you’re an athlete or you just want to be able to exercise without as much pain and discomfort, give us a call or click here to schedule an appointment so we can get you feeling better faster.

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Kalkstein Chiropractic
200 East Joppa Road #300
Towson, MD 21286
(410) 296-7700