Let’s Warm Up

I have talked in previous blog posts about warm ups – their purpose, benefits and also what constitutes a good warm up. With the local Times Colonist 10K Run this weekend, I thought this was an excellent time to review warm ups and give you some ideas if you are entering the run on Sunday. If not, these warm ups can be used anytime you are heading out for a jog, a hike or a training session. But first let’s review.

run cartoon

Benefits of a warm up:

* Increases blood flow to muscles
* Delivers more oxygen to the muscles due to greater exchange of oxygen from hemoglobin at higher temperatures.
* Increase nervous system conduction
* Increases synovial fluid in joints; lubricates joints and reduces muscle and joint stiffness
* Increases joint range of motion
* Increases muscle coordination
* Increases work capacity
* Prevents injury
* Helps you to mentally focus on training or competition

Dynamic warm up vs stretching:

Static stretches do not “warm up” the body. Dynamic stretches increase your heart rate and body core temperature. Dynamic warm ups move your body through a range of motion and movements that you are going to perform during your run, hike or training session.

What a Warm Up Should Consist of:

Start with a easy walk or a very light jog for 5 minutes to allow the body a chance to warm up. Then we will want to start on a series of drills and exercises to move increase joint mobility, work through a range of motion to help warm up and prepare joints for movements coming up and help to mentally prepare for the upcoming task.

Ankle Mobility Drills: ankle rolls – Perform 10 repetitions on each side.

ankle circles

Hip Mobility: Leg Swings – front to back and side to side. 10 repetitions front to back; and 10 repetitions side to side.

leg swings

Lateral squats/lateral lunges 8 reps each side

lateral squats

Walking Lunges – 10 reps each side
walking lunge

Forward Skip: Just like you did as a kid. Bring the knee up high in front and skip. Move the arms in alternating swings front to back.


Shoulder Circles: Raise your right shoulder towards your ear, roll back and down. Repeat with other shoulder for 10 on each side

Arm Swings: 10 swings forward and 10 swings back.

arm swings

A thorough dynamic warm up will better prepare you for the upcoming event, help prevent injuries and make your jog, run or hike much more enjoyable. Take the 10-15 minutes necessary to perform your warm and enjoy the outing, whatver it may be.

Till next time,

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