You have a busy schedule and have limited time to spend in the gym.
You think the warm up is boring (I understand).
Your warm up consists of walking on the treadmill, a couple toe touches, some leg swings and some arm circles.
Are you putting your health and performance at risk?

Well, today, I am going to talk about the importance of a proper warm up.

Do you put as much effort into your warm up, as you do your workout? It may not seem as important, but a proper warm up will help you stay healthy and continue to train.

As I said in an older post I talked about how I start each workout some sort of self-myofascial release, check it out here. From here, I move on to movement.

We warm up to help us get into proper posture. We are all working towards getting to neutral and this is where to start. The closer we can get to perfect alignment, the better we are going to move in and out of the gym. I like to start this part with some diaphragmatic breathing drills.

Another important factor to the warm up is increasing our core temperature. It is called a “warm up.” Increasing your core temperature will help get your joints primed for movement, increase flexibility/ extensibility and prep your nervous system. Breaking a sweat and increasing your heart rate will help dramatically.

Activate, turn on and warm up. Its very important to activate your hips, and more specifically your glutes. Doing some sort of glute activation drill is important to turn on your glutes and posteriorly tilt your pelvis (pulling your hips to neutral). Getting your glutes and core working together is very important to helping you stabilize and protect your spine during the workout. A couple great core and glute activation drills are: Dead Bugs, birddogs, glute bridges, x-band walks, side-lying clam shells, to name a few.

To properly work on moving correctly thru our joints we need to be mobile. Mobility is very important to helping us move correctly. Starting from the ground up, we need to make sure we work on our mobility in our ankles, hips, thoracic spine, and shoulders. Working on the mobility is great way in helping us stay healthy  and move more freely. Being mobile helps us insure we are moving properly thru full range of motions.

When doing your mobility work, as well as all your movements, make sure you are moving properly. We are priming ourself and our nervous system of what proper movement is.

All the parts of the warm up that I talked about already are helping ingrain proper movement in our brain. When teaching your brain movement, that is called motor control. Teaching ourself proper motor control, is important so our body knows what to do when its comes time to workout.

Last part of the warm up is where you get more specific to what you are going to do when you start lifting weights. This can consist of air squats, lunges, overhead lunges, push ups, pull a parts. With this part you really want to make sure your ingraining perfect form.  These are all done without weight so your just focusing on proper movement.

I make sure to warm up before each training session. If I don’t do a proper warm up before each session I can drastically tell in difference in how I move and how my joints feel. I am often given a hard time for how much I warm up and what it consists of.

I believe their is only one way to start your workout and that is with a proper warm up. It only takes 10-15 minutes and can drastically improve your posture, performance and health.

Everyone of my clients has their warm up, tailored to their needs. Their warm up is all based off there initial assessment and how they move. I usually alter their warm up every six to eight weeks.

I am sure I probably left something out, but I just wanted to give you a brief overview of why you should warm up. The benefits well out weigh risks. We all want to move better, feel better, be better and a proper warm up can help you accomplish that.

Before your next workout give yourself ten extra minutes to warm up, and I promise you will have a better workout.

If you have any questions please list them below, and I would be happy to help!

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