Daily Exercise Tasks (DET)

The Foam Rolling Reference Guide

In a previous post, I provided research that showed strong evidence towards the improvement of performance, whether it be sports, an active lifestyle, or simply improving strength for everyday, can be accomplished when incorporating Self Myofascial Release through foam rolling several days a week.  To read this post, there is a button at the bottom of the post.  As a Certified Corrective Exercise Specialist, it is quite clear to understand that every individual who experiences pain, typically displays a common and somewhat repetitive pattern that occurs in their injury cycle.  This has resulted from the beginnings of an altered movement pattern created earlier in their lives resulting from a new motor learning pathway that was established to offset joint instability and or muscle performance.  Since there are common muscles in the Human Movement System that have been shown to display signs of being overactive and requiring the breakdown of muscular adhesion, this guide will cover those areas that will help establish neuromuscular efficiency and restore proper length-tension relationships that create a stronger movement pattern.

Follow this pattern beginning with the lower extremities and work up.

The following information is part of the application of the Corrective Exercise Continuum as instructed by the National Academy of Sports Medicine. All exercises are provided to help assist in common neuromuscular dysfunctions leading to chronic joint pain.  Never complete unless medically cleared by a physician or medical expert or have completed the ParQ questionnaire provided by a CES. 

Plantar Fascia

Using a firm ball, roll along the Plantar Fascia, holding on sensitive areas for 30 seconds


Placing one leg over the other, roll your body downward so the roller moves up the calf muscle. Hold on sensitive areas for 30 seconds. Switch legs and repeat


Located on the outer side of the leg, next to the calf muscle, cross the opposite leg over and attempt to lift your body and place the weight on your elbow and Peroneals. Roll downward, hold on sensitive areas for 30 seconds. Switch sides and repeat.


Place the roller on the back side of legs, cross the leg over. Roll downward and hold on sensitive areas for 30 seconds. Begin just above the back of the knee and roll to the base of the Glutes. Hold on sensitive areas for 30 seconds. Switch legs and repeat.


This muscle hides behind the gluteus medius, and to expose it, you must cross over the leg and roll to the side, pulling the leg across the body. Roll up and down and side to side until you feel this muscle being reached. Hold for 30 seconds and switch sides and repeat


Lay down prone, with the roller on the inner thigh closer to the knee. Begin to roll outward and the towards the midline of the body. Hold on the sensitive areas for 30 seconds, switch sides and repeat.

Quadriceps/Hip Flexor

Lie in a prone position, with both thighs on the roller and just above the knee. Roll downward and hold on sensitive areas for 30 seconds. Rotate your body to each side if greater pressure is required.

Thoracic Spine

Starting at the base of the spine, roll your body downwards as the foam roller moves up the Thoracic spine. Typically no adhesions will be found, only the decompression of the spine

Latissimus Dorsi

Place the roller just behind the openness of the arm pit. Roll a bit up and down to feel the sensitive areas located in the Latissimus Dorsi. Hold on the sensitive areas for 30 seconds, switch sides and repeat.

Complete as often as needed to help alleviate muscular adhesions creating altered movement patterns in the Human Movement System.  

As you begin to become more familiar with completing bouts of SMR, you will begin to recognize areas on your body that are more prone to muscular adhesions and requiring SMR with foam rolling.

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