Improve Recovery & Performance with Foam Rolling [+VIDEO]

Elle foam rolling her calves to Improve Recovery & Performance

You guys, I can’t lie. I’m not (currently) phased by this lockdown thing. Why? ‘Cos I know I’m gonna come out the other side, feeling strong. I’m calling it lockdown STRONG. I’m gonna do that by chasing that illusive thing we call balance. Ha.

I don’t even remember when or why I decided to deliver an online foam rolling class, but honestly, it’s been the best thing to come out of this situation for me. So far. I needed it. You probably need it. Our foam rollers have never seen so much action.

What is Foam Rolling?

Foam rolling is a form of massage used by therapists to aid recovery and alleviate delayed- onset muscle soreness [DOMS]. It’s become a commonly used practice for treating and preventing soft tissue restrictions.

During foam rolling, you use your body weight on a foam roller to exert pressure on the soft tissue (i.e muscles). It places direct and sweeping pressure on your muscles which stretches the tissue and generates friction between the tissue and foam roller.

It’s basically a form of self-induced massage and right now, it’s the closest we’re gonna get to a practitioner (unless like me, you live with one!) because the pressure that the roller exerts on the muscles resembles the pressure exerted on the muscles through manual manipulation by a massage therapist (Pearcey et al., 2015).

Foam Rolling Benefits

The ironic thing is that, whether you’ve been working out every damn day, or whether you haven’t moved an inch, YOU NEED THIS. Some of my worse injuries (pulled muscle in my neck for example) have come from not moving.

The Pearcey (2015) study I referenced above found that foam rolling enhanced recovery from DOMS and reduced physical performance decrements after intense workouts.

Specifically, foam rolling resulted in increased pressure-pain threshold score (i.e less muscle soreness), sprint speed, power, and dynamic strength-endurance at various time points after exercise compared with those who did no foam rolling.

So, I’m gonna come out of this Lockdown STRONG. And my goal is to make sure you do the same. No matter what else you have going on (I’m currently using Fiit for online workouts, doing indoor cycling workouts and trying to run), there is still space in your schedule… actually, you need to make space in your schedule for some self massage through foam rolling, to aid your recovery, maintain / improve mobility and reduce your risk of injury.

30 minute Foam Rolling Guided Video

I wanna make sure that you know how to use your foam roller to keep some balance in your training.

If you already own one, it’s either because a practitioner advised you to utilise it between sessions or a friend told you it was a good idea. But have you been using it?!

What Foam Roller To Buy

If you don’t have one, they’re cheap and easy to pick up. Here are some great options I picked on Amazon for you. The ones with the massage balls and sticks are great as they help you get right in there on tight spots!

Grab your roller, make and clear some space to get busy in. You don’t need any equipment other than your foam roller, but if you have a mat, you will be more comfortable. The mat I use can be found here – it’s perfect for all forms of workout and yoga.

Have some water to hand and trust me, getting ready to strip off the layers!

Give this routine a go and let me know what you think!

Wanna join the foamies crew?!

I’m pretty certain that these classes will continue post lockdown, even if just once a month. It’ll be an opportunity to stay connected and maintain a good habit.

We’ve had attendees join from ALL OVER THE WORLD! Vancouver, Milan, Vietnam… it’s been epic. And the best part is, you never suffer alone!

I’m super excited to build a community during this time and to have you be a part of it. If you’ve got any questions, just get in touch, or leave a comment below…

You ready to roll?!


P.S Safety always comes first. If you are new to exercise ensure you seek advice from your GP. Make sure you drink plenty of fluids, wear appropriate clothing and carry out drills in a suitable space. Technique is paramount, and nothing should hurt. Should you experience pain, discomfort, nausea, dizziness, chest pain, shortness of breath etc, STOP and consult your GP. 


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References: Pearcey, G.E., Bradbury-Squires, D.J., Kawamoto, J.E., Drinkwater, E.J., Behm, D.G. and Button, D.C., 2015. Foam rolling for delayed-onset muscle soreness and recovery of dynamic performance measures. Journal of athletic training, 50(1), pp.5-13.


  1. April 24, 2020 / 23:56

    I really need to get a foam roller to help me after I’ve been running, so thank you for your recommendations. This also means I’d then be able to join in with your great classes!

    • Elle
      May 11, 2020 / 20:50

      You’re welcome! Look forward to catching you in class if you do decide to treat yourself to a foam roller!

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