When it comes to fitness training, it's often the little things that can make the biggest difference. This is especially true as it relates to how you "feel." Although it's easy to assume if someone looks great, they feel great, the hidden areas beneath the exterior often tell the real story.
There are plenty of people who are willing to do what it takes to lose a few pounds or get a little stronger. Few, however, are tuned into the details associated with functionality and overall health. In particular, the health of the muscles and surrounding fascia.
Fascia is a thin, tough, elastic type of connective tissue that wraps most structures within the body, including muscle. This soft tissue can become restricted due to overuse, trauma or inactivity, often resulting in pain, muscle tension, and diminished blood flow. Imagine a really tough piece of steak and you'll get a decent picture of how your muscles can seize up without proper care.
A great remedy is to spend a few minutes per day engaging in (SMR) or "Self-Myofascial Release." SMR is basically giving yourself a deep massage at no cost. As pleasant as a massage may sound, people aren't exactly lining up for this one. "Initially" this practice is one of the more unpleasant things you'll put yourself through. Overtime though, it gets way easier and the impact on how you move and feel is definitely noticeable.
In the video associated with this story (below) we use a hard Lacrosse ball to really dig into the muscle and I definitely shed a few tears filming this segment. A friendlier option to start off with is a tennis ball or foam roller available at most fitness or sporting goods stores.
This is a really great practice to get into and is also an easy way for business professionals to work out those knots after long days on their feet or sitting on airplanes. Commit to putting yourself through one of these "hurts so good" sessions and you can count this challenge as complete!
Soothes tight muscles
Alleviates pain associated with common golf ailments
Reduced recovery time