Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Study Spotlight: Effect of Self-Myofascial Release-A narrative review

By: Joel Luedke

We very much believe in foam rolling and self myofascial release (SMFR) with any other type of modality that works.  There are endless options on what you can use (see some ideas below) to work on your tissues but check out this review to see exactly how SMFR can help.

What They Did:
Researchers in this article did a literature review of all the information that has been put out on self myofascial release (SMFR) since the start of the research.  They used PubMed, Google Scholar, and PEDro databases and didn't put any limitations on their search for the keywords related to self-myoascial release (the keywords were quite extensive).

What They Found: 
After all of the research and reading there were 42 publications included in the review.  Overall the results of review were very positive in the use of SMFR.  There was a significant increase in the joint range of motion after using the SMFR techniques but there was no decrease in muscle force or changes in performance after the use of a foam roller.  At this time there is no trial evaluating SFMR for myofascial pain even though it is commonly used.

What It All Means: 
We believe very much in the use of SMFR for the treatment of yourself and the pains and tightness you may have.  From a practical sense using a foam roller seems to make sense as and it works and when the science backs it up that is always helpful.  If you spend the time utilizing a foam roller, softball, baseball, tennis ball, or lacrosse ball and focus on what you're trying to accomplish (think getting a really good massage) you can achieve a lot of results on your own.

The evidence they found in this review for the ability to increase joint range of motion using SMFR without decreasing performance is very promising.  This gives you the ability to utilize a foam roller basically whenever you need to and not have to worry about the potential of adverse affects.  Now as with everything there needs to be some level of moderation.  Don't go beyond getting yourself loosened up and working about 2 minutes per body part not only appears to be enough to make changes but also not long enough to go overboard.

Source: Effect of self-myofascial release on myofascial pain, muscle flexibility, and strength: A narrative review.

Foam Roller Options
-Standard Foam Roller
-Trigger Point Roller
-Rumble Roller

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