When it comes to warming up, my routine has undoubtedly evolved over the years.
As a younger athlete, we don’t always understand the importance of having your body as prepared as possible to perform at the highest level consistently. We tend to focus on both nutrition and training in terms of making sure we’re ready but leave the warm-up (and cool down) process out of the equation.
Having all your muscles warmed up before training or competition is arguably one of the best ways to avoid injury. As an athlete, all our muscles work together to make us perform. If the hips aren’t adequately warmed up, then that can affect the back, the hammies and more.
As a lacrosse athlete, if the back isn’t warmed up and loose, with the amount of force we use to shoot the ball, we can quickly strain or tweak something.
Make Time for a Warm-Up
Typically, when it comes to younger athletes and not warming up, it has to do with the amount of time it takes to do so. Athletes want to get out on the field and start to play. The earlier an athlete can understand that nutrition, training, warm-up, performance, cool down and recovery are ALL connected, the better off that athlete will be and have the potential for a long and healthy career.
Type of Warm-Up
The type of warm-up will come down to the sport you play in terms of the “best” warm-up. I also believe every athlete is different; therefore, everyone’s warm-up will vary. At my age, and what I’m required to do on the field to be successful, I can’t do ANYTHING until my hips, glutes, and back are adequately warmed up. If any of those muscles are tight, it will impact everything I do.
My warm-ups change depending on what I’m warming up to do (play a game or train), but below is what a typical warm-up could look like:
- A band around knees, bent knees, athletic position – knee out and in – 10 reps each leg x3
- Jog 20 Yards / Backpedal 20 yards (x2)
- Toe Touches, 15 yards
- Quad Pulls, 15 yards
- Knee to Chest, 15 yards
- Left, Right, Middle: Reach for The Sky, 15 yards (Spread legs, touch left foot, touch the right root, touch the middle ground under you, then reach your hands up over your head as high as you can. Take a step and repeat)
- Alternating Side Lunges, 10 yards
- Lunge with a Twist, 15 Yards
- Open the Gate,15 yards
- Close the Gate, 15 yards
- Toe Walks, 15 yards
- Heel Walks,15 yards
- A Skip, 15 yards x2
- 75% sprint 20 yards x2
- Shuffle 5 yards, shuffle back, turn and sprint 10 x2
- Backpedal 5 yards, turn and sprint 10 x 2
Remember to always speak with a professional before beginning any new workout program.
SHOP FOR YOUR TRAINING SUPPORT.
The contents of this blog were independently prepared and are for informational purposes only. The opinions expressed herein are those of the author and are not necessarily indicative of the views of any other party. Individual results may vary depending on a variety of patient-specific attributes and related factors.
Kyle Harrison is a DonJoy Performance® Sponsored Athlete.