Using a foam roller in Pilates is a simple and effective way to increase the variety in your workout, reduce your muscle soreness and fatigue, and assist you with holding positions until you build your strength.
In order to use your foam roller to its full potential during Pilates, you need to choose the size that is right for you and your frame, or get several sizes for even more workout options. Make sure you have a roller that is dense enough to hold its shape through hours of exercising, but soft enough to be comfortable during those same hours.
If you are new to Pilates, using a roller can assist you with those positions that you can't quite maintain on your own. In a squatting exercise, for example, you can use a foam roller by placing it between your thighs and calves as a wedge to help support your upper body. If you are required to arch your back while lying down, place the roller underneath you as a lift. This will help you to stretch your muscles and build your strength, but keep you from having to limit your workout as much while you are learning to maintain your balance.
Using a Pilate roller, you can exercise and relieve sore muscles at the same time. If you have a sore muscle in your back, for instance, when doing a Pilate exercise that positions you on your back, place the foam roller underneath you, across that sore muscle. As you move within the position, the roller will gently knead your muscle, providing some immediate relief and also soothing it so that it will be less sore post-workout. This works particularly well when using smaller rollers in your Pilate workout, as they will focus the massage more directly onto the places where you need it most.
Another way you can use a roller during Pilates is to add difficulty to certain exercises. Stretches and positions where you use your hands for support can be made even more effective if your hands are placed on the roller instead of the floor. This will force you to use your core muscles even more than during a regular Pilates workout. Learning how to use a foam roller during Pilates will also help spice up a routine that might otherwise become boring, which is good for your body as well as your mind, since varying an exercise routine makes workouts more effective.