Thursday, August 14, 2014

Warming Up: Why & How to Get Started

Warm Ups. One of the most overlooked, yet vitally important components of your workout. The warm up serves a number of different purposes, foremost preparing your body for activity. A good warm up can be broken down into two components, the general and specific.

The general warm-up is any movements that increase your circulation, breathing, sweat rate, etc. etc. A general warm up can be very basic like a short run/bike/row, or any combination of exercises, body weight exercises usually work best for the overall exercise population. One of my favorite general warm ups as a coach is either playing a game, yes adults can have fun playing games, or some sort of movement out of the ordinary.

The specific warm up is the time to focus on the upcoming movements of the workout, whether that be working up progressions or adding weight to lifts. As a coach, I am a huge fan of gymnastic progressions here, since they most commonly utilize body weight and also work a good range of motion. Although there are countless variations and options for warm ups, these two components are absolutely necessary for a successful warm up.

Some of those other options include specific mobility for individuals who lack mobility or that pertains to the workout's movements. Warm ups are also a great opportunity to work on skills. If you are going to spend time on skill development you must be careful to 1) not work yourself too hard and 2) you don't spend all your time warming up and miss the workout.

No matter what you choose as a warm up, it should not exhaust you to the point where it felt like another workout, it should be used a time to prepare your body for activity, simple as that! So start treating your warm ups as important as your workout. Show up on time! Be present & attentive! And get yourself prepared properly and you'll be amazed at the possibilities.

Until next time...

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