The Effects of Self-Myofascial Release Foam Rolling on Muscle Soreness or Pain After Experiencing Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness: A Critically Appraised Topic

in International Journal of Athletic Therapy and Training
Restricted access

Purchase article

USD  $24.95

Student 1 year subscription

USD  $74.00

1 year subscription

USD  $99.00

Student 2 year subscription

USD  $141.00

2 year subscription

USD  $188.00

Focused Clinical Question: Does an acute bout of foam rolling (FR) help reduce delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS)-related muscle soreness or pain in the first 0–72 hr? Clinical Bottom Line: There is moderate quality evidence to support the use of FR to reduce DOMS-related muscle soreness or pain at 24, 48, and 72 hr post DOMS. There is no evidence to support FR to reduce DOMS-related muscle soreness immediately after physical activity, or that FR before physical activity can prevent muscle soreness or pain.

Hjert has completed a master of science in athletic training at Whitworth University, Spokane, WA, USA. Wright is an associate professor and the program director for the accredited athletic training program in the Health Science Department at Whitworth University, Spokane, WA, USA.

Hjert (chjert20@my.whitworth.edu) is corresponding author.
  • 1.

    Jay K, Sundstrup E, Søndergaard SD, et al. Specific and cross over effects of massage for muscle soreness: randomized controlled trial. Int J Sports Phys Ther. 2014;9(1):8291. PubMed ID: 24567859

    • PubMed
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 2.

    MacDonald GZ, Button DC, Drinkwater EJ, Behm DG. Foam rolling as a recovery tool after an intense bout of physical activity. Med Sci Sports Exerc. 2014;46(1):131142. PubMed ID: 24343353 doi:

    • Crossref
    • PubMed
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 3.

    Pearcey GE, Bradbury-Squires DJ, Kawamoto JE, Drinkwater EJ, Behm DG, Button DC. Foam rolling for delayed-onset muscle soreness and recovery of dynamic performance measures. J Athl Train. 2015;50(1):513. PubMed ID: 25415413 doi:

    • Crossref
    • PubMed
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 4.

    Fridén J, Sjöström M, Ekblom B. Myofibrillar damage following intense eccentric exercise in man. Int J Sports Med. 1983;4(3):170176. doi:

  • 5.

    Fridén J, Lieber RL. Eccentric exercise-induced injuries to contractile and cytoskeletal muscle fibre components. Acta Physiol Scand. 2001;171(3):321326. doi:

    • Crossref
    • PubMed
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 6.

    Schwane JA, Johnson SR, Vandenakker CB, Armstrong RB. Delayed-onset muscular soreness and plasma CPK and LDH activities after downhill running. Med Sci Sports Exerc. 1983;15(1):51. PubMed ID: 6843319 doi:

    • Crossref
    • PubMed
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 7.

    Stecco A, Stern R, Fantoni I, De Caro R, Stecco C. Fascial disorders: implications for treatment. Am Acad Phys Med Rehabil. 2015;8(2):161168. doi:

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 8.

    MacDonald GZ, Penny M, Mullaley M, et al. An acute bout of self-myofascial release increases range of motion without a subsequent decrease in muscle activation or force. J Strength Cond Res. 2013;27(3):812821. PubMed ID: 22580977 doi:

    • Crossref
    • PubMed
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 9.

    Fleckenstein J, Wilke J, Vogt L, Banzer W. Preventive and regenerative foam rolling are equally effective in reducing fatigue-related impairments of muscle function following exercise. J Sports Sci Med. 2017;16(4):474479. PubMed ID: 29238246

    • PubMed
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 10.

    Beardsley C, Skarabot J. Effects of self-myofascial release: a systematic review. J Bodyw Mov Ther. 2015;19(4):747758. PubMed ID: 26592233 doi:

  • 11.

    Findley TW. Fascia research from a clinician/scientist’s perspective. Int J Ther Massage Bodyw. 2011;4(4):16. PubMed ID: 22211151 doi:

  • 12.

    Sefton J. Myofascial release for athletic trainers, part 1: theory and session guidelines. Athl Ther Today. 2004;9(1):4849. doi:

  • 13.

    Laffaye G, Da Silva DT, Delafontaine A. Self-myofascial release effect with foam rolling on recovery after high-intensity interval training. Front Physiol. 2019;10:19. doi:

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 14.

    Cheung K, Hume PA, Maxwell L. Delayed onset muscle soreness: treatment strategies and performance factors. Sports Med. 2003;33(2):145164. PubMed ID: 12617692 doi:

    • Crossref
    • PubMed
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 15.

    Torres R, Ribeiro F, Alberto Duarte J, Cabri JMH. Evidence of the physiotherapeutic interventions used currently after exercise-induced muscle damage: systematic review and meta-analysis. Phys Ther Sport Off J Assoc Chart Physiother Sports Med. 2012;13(2):101114. doi:

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 16.

    Crane JD, Ogborn DI, Cupido C, et al. Massage Therapy attenuates inflammatory signaling after exercise-induced muscle damage. Sci Transl Med. 2012;4(119):119ra13119ra13. PubMed ID: 22301554 doi:

    • Crossref
    • PubMed
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 17.

    Smith LL, Keating MN, Holbert D, et al. The effects of athletic massage on delayed onset muscle soreness, creatine kinase, and neutrophil count: a preliminary report. J Orthop Sports Phys Ther. 1994;19(2):9399. PubMed ID: 8148868 doi:

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 18.

    Farr T, Nottle C, Nosaka K, Sacco P. The effects of therapeutic massage on delayed onset muscle soreness and muscle function following downhill walking. J Sci Med Sport. 2002;5(4):297306. PubMed ID: 12585613 doi:

    • Crossref
    • PubMed
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 19.

    Zainuddin Z, Newton M, Sacco P, Nosaka K. Effects of massage on delayed-onset muscle soreness, swelling, and recovery of muscle function. J Athl Train. 2005;40(3):174180. PubMed ID: 16284637

    • PubMed
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 20.

    Curran P, Fiore R, Crisco J. A comparison of the pressure exerted on soft tissue by 2 myofascial rollers. J Sport Rehabil. 2008;17(4):432442. PubMed ID: 19160916 doi:

    • Crossref
    • PubMed
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 21.

    Monteiro E, Cavanaugh M, Frost D, Novaes J. Is self-massage an effective joint range-of-motion strategy? A pilot study. J Bodyw Mov Ther. 2017;21(1):223226. PubMed ID: 28167184 doi:

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
All Time Past Year Past 30 Days
Abstract Views 238 237 75
Full Text Views 11 11 2
PDF Downloads 6 6 1