Foam Roller VMO (Vastus Medialis Obliquus) Exercise


The Foam Roller VMO Exercise is a great self-massage exercise that will give your Vastus Medialis Obliquus (VMO) muscles a deep and effective sports massage, thus improving the health and quality of your muscle tissue and helping you to perform better.  It will also alleviate soreness and make your muscles feel better.

The Vastus Medialis Obliquus (VMO) is a small muscle just above and to the inside of your knee that is crucial for stabilising your kneecap and for cushioning and absorbing shock, during your golf swing and as you walk the course.

The foam roller overloads the muscle tissues through compression, causing your nerves to relax, signalling muscle spasms to shut off, pumping blood and and getting your lymphatic system flowing, to help muscle recovery and regeneration.  You’ll work out those knots (muscle adhesions) in your muscles caused either by inactivity, by the repetitive strain of the golf swing, or by walking a tough golf course.  This will enable you to stretch the muscles back out to their original length, making them more pliable and functional.

The Foam Roller VMO Exercise can be performed both before and after playing golf, practising on the range, or other physical activity.  It’s also great after sitting in the same position for a while, and can be enjoyed anywhere and anytime you feel tight and in need of a massage, such as while watching television or before bedtime.


This exercise requires a foam roller, also referred to as a foam roll.

For more information on the foam roller and its benefits, see An Introduction to the Foam Roller – The Golfer’s Best Friend.


  • Start by lying face down, with a foam roller just above the inside of one knee and your other leg to the side.  Use your forearms to help support your weight, keep your abdominal muscles engaged, and place as much weight on the foam roller as you can tolerate.
  • Roll along the inside of your quadriceps just above the knee.
  • Repeat with the roller under your other leg.

You may find it easier at first to perform this exercise with the leg that you are massaging bent at the knee, then, as you progress, extend it out straight in order to get deeper into your muscles.

Work the foam roller back and forth, gliding your VMO over the foam roller, for 30 to 60 seconds on each leg.  As you work you’ll discover muscle spasms and tender pressure points, hold on each pressure point for an additional 30 seconds until the muscle releases from spasm.

The first time you perform this exercise, it might be a little painful, just like a professional sports massage would be, but that’s just a sign that you stand to benefit enormously from it.  After the first few sessions, it will start to become considerably easier and more comfortable.  The better it feels, and the less it hurts, the better the quality of your muscle tissue.

Only go as deep as you can tolerate, and slowly build up the amount of time you spend on this exercise.


If you have any questions or comments about this or other articles on Golf Loopy, please send us an email.


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Golf Performance Programmes – the most effective golf-specific fitness regimens on the planet, guaranteed to make you a better golfer!

There are a number of other golf recovery and regeneration exercises in the Golf Loopy Train like a Champion System.

An Introduction to the Foam Roller – The Golfer’s Best Friend.

Introduction to the Swing like a Champion System.

Golf Anatomy and Kinesiology, a collection of articles describing the roles of the muscles involved in the golf swing.


» Train like a Champion home page.

» Swing like a Champion Home Page.

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