Foam Roller Therapy is one of our Secret weapons in the Podiatry clinic for the Treatment of Foot Pain and Leg Pain.
Personal use of the foam roller can make you an instant fan of the treatment for muscle aches and pains…don’t over do it though, follow simple instructions from your therapist and a little common sense.
Here is a very good video explaining simple exercises with foam roller…no it is not me in the video but I wish I looked that good with my shirt off.
Foam roller therapy is so useful we are considering using it as part of warm up for our Tai chi / Qi gong classes. We find that the modern “Western” body is so out of balance externally and internally that simple Tai chi postures cause enough discomfort to the student that they are not relaxing into the Tai chi form or even worse…preforming the Tai chi postures incorrectly, causing more harm than good.
Being a Podiatrist definitely comes in handy while teaching Tai chi… we find that the 3 Circle Qi gong posture highlights external physical imbalance as well as internal imbalance. The problem in the past has been getting the student to stick with the Qi gong long enough with the correct posture to gain the benefits. We are working at aligning the scientific understanding with the “Esoteric” nature of Qi gong and Tai chi…that is where the Foam Rollers are coming in.
Foam rollers are used by different therapists in various way…using different physiological theories. Trigger point therapy, myofascial release, Strain / counter strain theory, Active Release and Myofascial meridian theory are some of the theories that drive the therapies. The Myofascial Meridian theory is what we are working with at the moment in the clinic and it seems to mesh well with our knowledge of the Internal Chinese Martial Arts. We will discuss this theory in greater detail in another article.
A life time of Martial Arts combined with over 25 years as a clinical Podiatrist has left its toll much like any active working person. Like you we often don’t have the best ergonomically designed work environment…especially when doing off site visits like Aged Care facilities.
What sort of Pain can Foam Roller therapy Help
One of my Old injuries to the Left thigh has benefited greatly by a bit of Self Treatment with the Foam Roller. Like most injuries we fail to give them the time and professional care due to active busy lives, choosing to soldier on. Well these injuries eventually come back to haunt you, demanding your attention. This injury over time produced referred Pain to the left Knee…after excluding more sinister conditions we went about using the Foam Roller to work on the damaged myofascial region causing the pain. In this case we received rapid response by using the foam roller before and after exercise…this may not always be the case.
Click Here for a Chart of some of the Exercises with a Foam Roller.
A little warning…self assessment of medical conditions and injuries seems to be a hobby of most people and I’m no different to you except I have a Masters degree in Podiatry as well as the common sense to seek expert opinions for my health when it is outside of my expertise. This common sense saved my life when I detected a serious heart condition and sort specialist care…yet another story for another day.
Before exercising with a Foam Roller have any Painful injury assessed by the appropriate Health Professional…Podiatrist, Physiotherapist, Osteopath, Chiropractor or Medical Doctor…whatever your choice.