The Foam Roller is a very important tool in basketball injury prevention. It is a small cylinder object that allows an athlete to apply pressure using his or her own body weight. The foam roll ranges in size and density. Usually the darker the color the denser (firm) the roller is. The foam roller should be used before the athlete warms up, and preferably after the training session.
The foam roller purpose is simple. It is a tool to reduce the chance of injury and improve performance in your training session. The first time the athlete uses the foam roller they will feel slight discomfort or mild pain (if you experience pain you should get checked out by a medical professional). This is normal and a good indicator that the athlete has poor tissue quality. The foam roller is an excellent tool to accomplish this.
The Foam Roller is often called the “poor man’s massage.” Although there is nothing that substitutes a skilled masseur, getting a massage before every training session is too expensive. Although I highly recommend getting a massage as often as you can afford, the foam roller offers an effective low cost alternative (under $15) to improve tissue quality.
The Foam Roller has numerous benefits. The first being helping to release of scar tissue and knots that are formed in the muscles as a result of activity. By rolling on these “hot spots”, we are applying tension to that area forcing the body to relax. Done frequently enough, this removes restriction of the muscle allowing it to fire better and more efficiently. Rolling also helps increase body temperature bin a less strenuous way, allowing a better warm up to follow
From my opinion the foam roller is best used in the following places:
Tfl (tensor fascia late)
I did intentionally leave out calves, hamstrings and pectoris not because they are not important but because I have found better tools to get the job done, which I will write about later.
In conclusion, if you want to take a major step in preventing injuries on the basketball court, make a small investment in a foam roller. I promise you will not be sorry.