I love using my foam roller for a post-workout massage—but is there anything else I can do with it? —Rachel G.
Good question. While I believe the myofascial benefits of foam rolling are reason enough to keep one around at all times, I totally understand wanting to get more use out of it.
Lauren Roxburgh, a celebrity trainer who wrote a book on foam rolling, stopped by the Thrive HQ yoga studio to demonstrate exactly how you can roll your way to slimmer legs in just four moves. Sounds too good to be true, right? That’s what I thought. But even though these movements don’t look like much, when performed correctly, they’ll leave you with a serious burn.
Using tenets of Pilates, yoga, and muscle-lengthening eccentric contractions, these moves will target your hamstrings, quads, and glutes to leave them looking longer and leaner. Trust me—you’ll feel it after just a couple of reps. And because you’ll be balancing on the foam roller, you’ll work the core muscles, too. Bonus six-pack time!
Another reason I love Roxburgh’s leg workout? It’s a perfect rest-day routine for all you cardio-fiends out there. Because foam rolling works the stabilizing muscles around the knees, it can help prevent injuries, especially in runners. And working with a foam roller is just great for the body generally—sitting all day (as many of us do at work) “bunches up” the quad muscles and the tissue around your hips, according to Roxburgh. Rolling helps undo all of that.
Check out the video to see all four moves, and let us know what you think in the comments below!