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When It Comes To Tension Release---This is How We Roll!

When you think of fitness and working out, what comes to mind? Eating healthy, strength training, and getting in some cardio are probably at the top of your list. But what about mobility and range of motion? How does your body feel and move after an intense exercise session? If your answer is stiff and sore then there is a component of fitness that you're missing---myofascial release, a hands on method of releasing tension and stress. How do you do it? Foam rolling is a one of the quickest and easiest ways.

We put our bodies through a lot of stress every time we work out and whether you're a beginner or veteran, you need to take the time to help your body release the tension that it builds and holds.

The tension our bodies create during and after a workout is a form of protection. If you're performing a forward lunge for example, there is a certain distance your leg can bend forward before you start to feel a pull in your hamstring or groin. This is your body sending you a warning that if you keep going you can potentially injure yourself. By foam rolling you're telling your body that it's okay to release the tension it created to protect you---you're helping your body loosen up and relax.

If you notice that your joints have a limited range of motion after a workout, give foam rolling a shot. It only takes about 10 minutes and it will not only improve your performance by decreasing your recovery time, but it will also improve your flexibility and prevent injuries.

Check out these moves that address the five critical areas we all need to focus on and let me know how it goes---I guarantee that your body will thank you!

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Glutes

Sit with your butt on top of the roller. Bend your knees, and then cross one leg so that the ankle is over the knee. Shift your weight to the side of the crossed leg, rolling over your glutes until you feel tension. Repeat on opposite side.

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Lower Back

In a seated position, place the roller under your lower back.Rounding your shoulder blades, raise your hips off of the floor and lean back, keeping your weight on your lower back. Now roll over back and forward, keeping your weight off of the spine and on the muscles to one side of it. Roll over your lower back. Repeat on the other side.

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Upper Back

Lie down with your back on the floor and place the roller underneath your upper back. Rounding your shoulder blades, raise your hips off of the ground and place your weight onto the roller. Shift your weight to one side and roll. Alternate sides.

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Hamstrings

While seated, extend your legs over the roller so it’s positioned on the back of the upper legs. Place your hands to the side to help balance your weight. Using your hands, lift hips off of the floor and shift your weight on the roller to one leg. Relax the hamstrings of the leg you are stretching. Roll over the foam from below the hip to above the back of the knee. Repeat with opposite leg.

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Quads

Lie facedown on the floor with your weight supported by your hands or forearms. Place the roller underneath both legs and lift your hips off the ground in a plank position. Shifting your weight forward and back slowly rolling from above the knee to below the hip.