Listen Up, Runners! This Foam-Roller Massage Will Help Keep You on the Road

Listen Up, Runners! This Foam-Roller Massage Will Help Keep You on the Road

When you’re training for a race, foam rolling is vital. This self-massaging technique loosens stiff muscles and helps keep fascia (connective tissue in muscles) loose. Foam rolling, along with stretching and cross training, can help prevent repetitive stress injures that could disrupt training. We want to keep you healthy and strong leading up to race day. This preventive routine takes only 10 to 15 minutes u2014 you could do it every day if you like but should aim to roll at least once or twice a week. Your body will thank you.

| IT Band

  • Lying on your side, similar to a side plank position, place the roller on the outside of your thigh just below your hip.
  • Place your top arm on your hip, and using your top leg for stability, roll the length of your thigh, stopping just above the knee. Go slowly, and do not roll over the knee joint. Keep your bottom leg lifted, or lower it down to the floor if you can. Chances are high that this move will be painful, which is a sign that you really need to do this.
  • If you find an especially tender point, try rolling forward and back to release this spot.
  • Roll for 30-60 seconds, then switch sides.

Tip: The IT band is a thick strand of fascia that runs the length of the thigh; when it gets tight, it can pull the knee out of alignment, causing pain and inflammation in the joint.

| Glutes

  • Lying on the floor, lift your legs and place the roller at the back of your pelvis (aka sacrum).
  • Gripping the end of the roller for stability, slowly twist your lower body to the left, then to the right, to massage your glutes. Continue for 30 to 60 seconds.
  • Adjust your body’s position until you find the “sweet spot”” or tight spot. Direct pressure will help to release knots.

Tip: Tight glutes can pull on the IT band and adversely affect the alignment of the hips and knees.

| Piriformis

  • Sitting on the floor