Improving the traditional "warm up"
How can a traditional warm-up be improved?
Jogging, cycling and X-training are a staple for the majority of people’s warm-ups but how much more effective a warm-up can be.
Most traditional warm ups focus mainly on the temperature-related mechanisms and involve basic activities that require movement of the major muscle groups of the body, such as jogging, cycling or rowing. A movement preparation warm-up can help set the tone for the rest of the training session and will prepare you physiologically as well as psychologically.
Movement preparation brings together technical reinforcement of fundamental movement patterns such as squatting, lunging, pressing etc, promotes cognitive thought processes that are critical to body awareness and importantly creates variation and interest that will be more engaging than sitting on a bike!
An appropriate movement preparation warm-up will increase tissue temperature throughout the body allowing the joints and muscles to move optimally, increase dilation of blood vessels allowing blood flow to improve to the working musculature and improve central nervous system activity, improving muscular force capabilities and reaction times.
Movement preparation can also help to increase proprioceptive awareness and whole body control by creating increased sensitivity of certain aspects of the body. This will allow for skill rehearsal and reinforcement of correct movement patterns for further on in the training session or sport.
A movement preparation warm up will also give you a chance to work on mobility and stability issues you may have. This will allow explosive full motion movements to be performed more efficiently and concisely.