My muscles become sore really quickly when I’m on my feet all day and dancing most of the night. Taking a little time for fascial release and self-massage brings much needed muscle relief. I wish that I could bring my foam roller to every dance event, but it can be cumbersome to carry around in a carry-on suitcase. Instead, I bring a tennis ball and my prickly ball (or a golf ball works great). There’s a lot of information in my previous blog post on fascial release and foam rolling; this section covers techniques I use to limber up specific muscle groups.
There are four major muscle groups in our lower legs: gastrocnemius, soleus, peroneus longus, and tibialus anterior. The gastrocnemius and soleus are usually considered our calf muscles. The peroneals and ant tib are usually forgotten in typical self-care routines, which can lead to shin splints. My calfs are naturally tight and need regular maintenance to feel pliable. Therefore, I spend a lot of time massaging my calfs and peroneal muscles using my hands or a small ball.