5 Strength Moves You Can Do with A Foam Roller $0.00

5 Strength Moves You Can Do with A Foam Roller

By: Morgan Gotthardt |
5 Strength Moves You Can Do with A Foam Roller

What are the Benefits of Foam Rolling?

Foam rolling is a self-myofascial release technique used to relieve muscle tightness, soreness, and inflammation. Self-myofascial release provides the patient with the ability to control the healing and recovery process by applying pressure in specific locations.

Instruct your patients to use the roller on more tender areas or trigger points to decrease density and over-activity of the muscle. Foam rollers can be used before, during, or after exercise to strengthen the core, build balance, or improve range of motion.

Encourage your patients to try this strength training method using these exercises and guidelines!

Choosing a Foam Roller

Foam rollers come in a variety of densities, so individuals need to be careful in choosing the right one to suit their needs. Soft rollers have a smooth, soft foam surface and are great for beginners. Deep tissue rollers have extra firm ridges which stimulate deeper layers of muscles for long-lasting pain relief.

It is also important to take into consideration shape and size. Shorter rollers are more effective for smaller areas such as the arms and calves. To improve the experience of soft foam rollers, a rigid muscle roller wrap can be used to offer different levels of firmness. These wraps easily attach with hook & loop strapping.

Man using foam roller

Improve Athletic Performance & Strength With Foam Rolling

Used prior to physical activity, the foam roller helps increase blood flow to working muscles and connective tissue. This makes patients more pliable and receptive to increases in range of motion.

Adding a foam roller to an exercise gives standard moves a challenging twist, increasing muscle strength and stability. Balancing on a foam roller requires the body to use more muscles, especially the core, to perform the move. To improve athletic performance, guide your trainees through some of these strength moves in their next workout routine!

Wall Squats

  1. Position the foam roller between the wall and your mid back
  2. With your feet shoulder-width apart, squat down into the roller
  3. Once the roller touches your shoulder blades, slowly stand back up
  4. Repeat for a desired number of reps

Reverse Rolling Lunges

  1. Position the foam roller directly behind you
  2. Position your right leg so that the top of your foot is touching the roller
  3. Keeping your left knee over your ankle, bend your knee 90 degrees
  4. Roll your back shin over the foam roller
  5. Rise up and repeat for a desired number of reps
  6. Switch to the opposite side

Tricep Dips

  1. Sit on the floor with the roller directly behind you
  2. Reach both of your arms behind your hips and position your hands shoulder-width apart on the foam roller
  3. Extend your legs so that your heels are the only thing touching the floor
  4. Bend your elbows 90 degrees and lift up for a desired number of reps

Side Plank with Leg Raise

  1. Lie on your left side with your left hand on the middle of the foam roller
  2. Lift your hips, aligned with your shoulders, and raise your right arm straight at shoulder height
  3. Lift your right leg up to hip height, without lifting or lowering your hips
  4. Return your foot back to the floor and repeat for a desired number of reps
  5. Switch to the opposite side

Rolling Plank

  1. Lie on your stomach and position the tops of your feet on the foam roller
  2. Get in a forearm plank position (make sure your elbows are in line with your shoulders)
  3. Roll your body slightly forward without letting your back arch or round
  4. Return to starting position and repeat for desired number of reps

Stretches to Help Avoid Injuries

Using a foam roller not only helps lengthen and relax muscles, but also helps avoid injury during performance. Individuals new to foam rolling are recommended to roll for 5-10 minutes on overactive and sore muscles. For users with chronic muscle pain and soreness, foam rollers are best used 3-4 times a day. As with any other kind of training modality, your patients will need to be diligent with use to get the most out of foam rolling.


  1. Sit on the floor with your legs extended out in front of you
  2. Place the foam roller under the calves and bend the right knee, resting the right ankle on the left leg
  3. Slowly roll the foam roller along the back of the leg, up and down from the knees to the ankles
  4. Repeat on the opposite side
Foam roller on calves


  1. Lie facedown on the floor and place the foam roller under your hips
  2. Resting your forearms on the floor for support, slowly roll up and down from the hip to your knees.
Foam roller on quadriceps

Upper Back

  1. Position the foam roller under your shoulders
  2. Rest your back against the foam roller and bend your knees so that your feet are flat on the floor
  3. Lift your butt and place your hands behind your head or crossed over your chest
  4. Keeping your core tight, slowly roll forward and back
  5. The foam roller should be moving up and down between the middle of your back and the top of your shoulder blades
Foam roller on upper-back

Shoulders & Sides

  1. Lie down on the right side with your right arm extended on the floor
  2. Position the foam roller directly under your right armpit, perpendicular to your body
  3. Bend your left arm and place your hand behind your head or on the floor for extra support
  4. Roll up and down, allowing the foam roller to move from your armpit to just above your waist
  5. Repeat on the opposite side
Foam roller on shoulder sides

Foam rolling can provide great benefits both before and after a workout. Using a foam roller at the start of a workout decreases muscle density and prepares you for a better warm-up. Foam rolling after a workout aids in muscle recovery after strenuous exercise.

Large, heavily-muscled individuals will perform better with a high density roller whereas a smaller, younger individual should begin with a soft foam roller.

Ultimately, foam rollers will help speed up recovery, relieve muscle tightness and improve movement patterns. In your next therapy session, get the workout rolling with a foam roller!


  1. https://breakingmuscle.com/fitness/what-is-a-foam-roller-how-do-i-use-it-and-why-does-it-hurt
  2. https://www.rei.com/learn/expert-advice/foam-roller-exercises.html
  3. https://www.runnersworld.com/training/a20790677/how-to-use-a-foam-roller/
  4. https://greatist.com/move/foam-roller-exercises-the-best-moves-for-strength
  5. https://www.outsideonline.com/2293511/foam-roller-moves-have-nothing-do-recovery

Medical Disclaimer: The information provided on this site, including text, graphics, images and other material, are for informational purposes only and are not intended to substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other healthcare professional with any questions or concerns you may have regarding your condition.