Do Self‑Myofascial Release Devices Release Myofascia? Rolling Mechanisms: A Narrative Review

Review written by Todd Hargrove info

Key Points

  1. Rolling can reduce pain and improve ROM without decreases in strength.
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BACKGROUND & OBJECTIVE

Research shows that “rolling” with foam, massage balls or other instruments can reduce pain and improve flexibility, without decreasing strength (1, 2). The purpose of this narrative review was to examine the mechanisms for these effects, and whether they involve any process that can be called “myofascial release.”

‘rolling’ can reduce pain and improve flexibility, without decreasing strength
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the term ‘self-myofascial release’ is a misnomer and misleading as applied to rolling

Myofascial Tone and Soft Tissue Restrictions

Excess stiffness of fascia or restrictions in fascial mobility have been reported to occur in response to insufficient or excess loading, injury, inflammation, or disease. The proposed mechanisms for these restrictions include contraction of myofibroblast cells, adhesions, changes in fascial

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