When Should You Use a Foam Roller?

Foam rollers
Image by Kzenon/Depositphotos

Anyone who’s ever worked out knows the feeling of muscle soreness. Sometimes it’s so bad, you might feel like you can’t walk or use the stairs. There are a bunch of ways to prevent this from happening, and one of those is by using a foam roller. Foam rollers are great because they massage out the tension from your muscles on a deeper level than stretching does. The question is, when should you use a foam roller–before or after your workout?

Before a Workout

If you want to use a foam roller to improve your range of motion with your muscles for your workout, it’s a good idea to use it before your workout. It’s important to note, however, that you should always warm up before you use a foam roller. Using a foam roller on cold or static muscles could lead to injury or pain. 

After a Workout

The most popular use for foam rollers is definitely after a workout. When your muscles are totally exhausted and swollen from your workout, rolling them can help prevent the cramping and soreness later on. It’s recommended to use a foam roller right after your workout on the muscle groups used. Do this before your cool-down stretch to get the best results.