Tip: How to Foam Roll on Rest Days

It's different than how you do it before or after workouts. Here's a quick guide and video.

Acute vs. Global

Most of the time, we use self-myofascial release or SMR techniques acutely, treating trigger points in soft tissues with small, targeted movements, often before training. But this is different. To turn a rest day into an accelerated recovery day, we're going to hit some of the biggest muscles in the body using the "pizza dough roller" effect.

Global Self-Myofascial Release (SMR) for Large Muscles

By using larger passes from 4-12 inches at a time, you'll be able to cover more area and eventually the complete region. Prioritizing the largest tissues in the body will give you the best bang for your systemic recovery buck. The five key areas to include are:

  • Quads
  • Glutes
  • Hams
  • Pecs
  • Lats

Forget about majoring in the minor tissues. Stick with the big boys here.

2-3 Minutes to Boost Recovery

Since the goal here is recovery, you must spend some serious time on each of these tissues. The big five mentioned above are the largest, broadest, and thickest muscles in the body, so we need more than a half-assed 30 seconds to fully cover the surface area these heavy hitters.

Spend at least 2-3 minutes on each muscle group, coursing from the most distal aspect of the muscle to the most proximal. There's no way to overdo this aspect of recovery. Just make sure the rest of your body remains in a relaxed state and that you're using deep breathing techniques.