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Warm Up Before Workout – Tips on How to Prepare Your Body for a Good Workout

Aug.11.2021
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Warm Up Before Workout

Stop right there! Don’t go full throttle for that really intense workout routine without some good warm-up exercises to get your body ready for it first! If you didn’t already know this, it is crucial to warm up your body before you do vigorous exercise. There are countless benefits to a good and proper warm-up, not to mention the fact that you’re potentially saving yourself from injury and unsafe exercise practices. If you don’t know how to warm up before a workout, you should be pleased to know that this article is full of amazing easy warm up exercises to work into your daily workout regimen. Depending on what you are planning to partake in, we have an array of methods that will teach you the best way to warm up before workout time as well as an answer to all of your warm-up-related questions. Don’t forget to drink water, eat a proper diet and get plenty of rest to help make your warm-up, workout and cool down the most effective and beneficial for your health!

The Benefits of Full Body Warm-Up Exercises Before Workout

Some people skip the warm-up to save time or energy while others simply don’t know what quick warm-up exercises they could do before they get into their main workout circuit. It is important to understand that basic warm-up exercises can bring you a wide range of benefits from better mobility to injury prevention.

Skipping the warm-up is one of the biggest mistakes you can make when trying to get into a healthy exercise practice. When you do an effective warm-up you are essentially doing the best thing for your body and over time you will notice how extreme the difference between going into a workout cold would be from having an adequate warm-up before getting to intense exercises.

Warming up prevents injuries because it can help with your range of motion, it brings you bodily awareness that will carry over into the more intense sections of your workout and help you maintain proper form and function. Warming up can also target the muscles and muscle groups that you want to strengthen in order to perform better when you’re working out. If you suffer from sore muscles, arthritis or you’re just simply stiff from sleeping the night before, warming up can decrease any pain or fatigue that you feel during the workout.

The increased flexibility, strength, and physical awareness can help you gain major improvements in whatever exercises you’re participating in whether that be running, weight lifting, rock climbing, or any team sport. Whether you’re working out for fun, for leisure or to get in shape, you can’t go wrong with a thorough warm-up and a nice cool down to cushion your workout and enhance your body’s ability to exercise.

What Is a Cool Down?

What Is a Cool Down?

We’re talking about warming up, but we should also mention that cooling down, or stretching and conditioning after a workout can be just as beneficial. A cool-down will help you enhance flexibility and strength as well as aid in muscle recovery, soreness, and mental clarity. Think of it like taking some time to digest the workout that you just did and center yourself so that you’re ready to take on the day or get a good night’s rest depends on the time of your day that you do your workouts.

The body can get riled up or physically exhausted after some intense exercise, so a cool down is a perfect way to get your body back to neutral or a baseline. This cooldown can also help you reap the mental health benefits of exercise because as the exercise endorphins are flowing through you you have time to meditate and appreciate the hard work you have just done.

Ways to Warm Up Before Exercise

To warm up before exercise you can either focus on the muscle groups or actions that you will be doing when you workout or give yourself a more general warm-up to prepare you for anything. It is recommended that you do a bit of both for the best all together preparedness for your workout. Some good ways to get generally warmed up might be to focus on the core with some abdominal warm-up exercises, to focus on cardio with some light jogging or jumping jacks, or to focus on balance, flexibility and alignment with some dynamic stretching.

Should You Stretch Before or After a Workout?

There is a common misconception that you should either stretch before or after a workout. While the ways in which you do it will be different depending on whether you’re warming up or cooling down, you will fare best by doing stretching exercises before workout time and after your workout has finished. The difference between before and after workout stretches is in the way that they are done.

Stretching before a workout should always be done in an active way. There are active stretches and passive stretches, and the passive stretches are best to put off until after you’ve finished working out. The proper stretching before working out will be done in an active manner, meaning that you’re moving through the stretch rather than holding it.

Some examples of simple warm-up exercises that will have you feeling limber and loose for your workout might include things like lunges, cat-cow stretch in yoga or head circles. Remember that with everything you should start slow and gradually progress to the more intense active movements. When it comes to how to properly stretch before a workout, this might look like lightly jogging before you start with your lunges.

Best Warm-Up Exercises Before Workout

Best Warm-Up Exercises Before Workout

Now that you have plenty of information about why you should be warming up, let’s talk about the different warm-up exercises you could use to get all of those benefits. What are some good warm-up exercises? Earlier in this article, we talked about core workouts, cardio workouts, and dynamic stretching. Now we’re going to go through a list of warm-up exercises before workout time that fit in those three categories.

Core Workouts

Great when you’re doing warm-up exercises at home!

Planks

Planks are an all-around excellent way to warm up your whole body and specifically target core muscles that will keep you strong and stabilized during your workout. To do a plank you simply get into the position you would get into to do a push-up and just hold that position. You want your arms either extended under your shoulders or bent at the elbows with the forearms supporting your weight as your stomach is engaged and your body is held straight like a plank. This means your bum should not be higher than your belly button.

Hold there for 30 seconds to two minutes depending on how much your abdominal muscles can handle. Start with a shorter duration and do a few reps. Then build up to a longer duration of planks either keeping the reps or not. If you do three 30 second planks in a row that is similar to doing one plank for one minute and thirty seconds. If you can do three one-minute planks in a row you’re on your way to a super-strong core.

Bicycle Climbers

This abdominal workout is great because it can both work your core and give you a bit of a cardio workout at the same time. To do this one lie on your back with your hands behind your head. Then lift your shoulders and head as well as your legs a little bit off of the floor. Once you’re in this position try to touch your right elbow to your left knee and then your left elbow to your right knee. Continue like this 20 times and then repeat those reps three times. Try to do this quickly to get that cardio in.

Cardio Workouts

For cardio, you want to get your lungs working and your heart pumping. These workouts will get your whole body going and your blood flowing. Some good examples might be jogging, jumping jacks, bicycling, or swimming!

Dynamic Stretches

For dynamic stretching, you could try yoga, lunges or squats. These are all great ways to actively help with strengthening and flexibility at the same time. To do a lunge simply stand with good posture with your legs hip-distance apart and send one leg forward to step on it and bend both legs putting most of your weight in the front leg. To do a squat, stand a little wider than feet hip-width apart and pretend you are going to sit on a stool and then come back up. Do these in repetition for the best results.

How Long Should a Warm-Up Last

How Long Should a Warm-Up Last

Deciding on how long your warm-up should last will depend upon a few factors. Firstly, the kind of workout you are about to do will determine how long and in what ways you should warm-up. There is no set amount of time you should always spend warming up, and in fact, you might find that some days you need just ten minutes to feel ready to go while other days you might want to take a longer 25-30 minutes to get ready to do the more intense stuff. Some people will only have a short amount of time during their day to get their workout done and might be tempted to skip the warm-up portion and go straight to the high-intensity stuff.

It is strongly advised that even if you’re short on time and you have to make your warm-up a little shorter than you might otherwise, do not skip the warm-up part. Warming up is the best way to prevent injury and put you in the best condition to perform during your workout. Even if you only have five minutes for the warm-up portion of your workout, spend those five minutes wisely. If you have all of the time in the world to do your workout, you can take that time to do things that will prepare the muscle groups you’re going to use and get you ready to take on the world.

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