3 essential foam roller moves for runners

This content has been created in collaboration with New Balance.

Gone are the days when foam rollers were used exclusively by elite athletes. Now anyone who works out – especially runners – needs to learn how to roll.

Which is why we’ve asked New Balance ambassador AJ Odudu (@AJOdudu) to talk us through her favourite muscle recovery moves.

1/ Quads

Lying in a forearm plank position, move the roller under your quads. This can be done with both legs or one at a time – one leg stacked on top of the other will provide more pressure and therefore a deeper massage. Fair warning: it will also hurt a lot more.

Make the movements small as you track back and forward and side-to-side over an area. Search for tight spots and target them by making the movements even smaller.

2/ Calves

As with the quad move, you can do both legs, stack them, or lift one in the air while you press the other one on the roller.

Depending on what is more comfortable for you, hold your upper body up using your hands or your forearms. Then roll forwards and backwards and from side to side using small movements.

3/ Hamstrings

When working your hamstrings make sure you avoid your joints and concentrate your rolling well above your knees.

Once again, you can either hit both legs together or stack them on top of each other for a more intense massage. If you don’t feel like the foam roller is doing enough you can also using a massage ball or a tennis ball.

New Balance Toughest Opponent is a story about the battles we have within ourselves. The niggling mind games that play out between our ears that make us question whether to run that extra mile, to lift that heavier weight, or to go forward and push harder, faster and stronger than we did the day before. Find out more at: http://www.newbalance.co.uk/TougestOpponent.

You are your toughest opponent.