Make sure you’re warming up with intention! Most people put a great deal of effort into training plans but “walk through” the warm up process. The warm up should be thought of as a preparation for the heavy lifting/intense activity you’re about to do and is a time that can help you focus on the goals you want to achieve. Just like your workouts warm ups should be tailored to your individual goals. Here are some ideas for your next warm up and some we like to employ performed in this order!
1. 5-10 minutes on a stationary bike or some preferred cardiovascular exercise. The effort here should be enough to start raising your temperature. We want to increase the temperature of our muscles, tendons and ligaments to make them more pliable and less susceptible to injury.
2. Foam Rolling – Don’t spend a lot of time here as it can diminish the central nervous system a bit which you will need for optimal performance. But foam rolling can be useful for particular areas causing impingement, holding tension and for chronic issues as well as can also improve blood flow and circulation in the targeted muscles.
3. Stretching – Static stretching involves holding the stretch at the “challenging position” for a period; only hold the stretch for 10 – 30 seconds. I’ve found this helps reduce tightness without negatively impacting performance. Dynamic stretching is movement based stretching. A “back and forth motion” from the start and endpoint of the stretch. This type of stretching is great to help mobilize the joints contributing to greater overall mobility.
Good luck with your next session! Train hard and train smart!