Warming up before working out is important. This is because it can help you avoid injury by ensuring that your muscles and joints are functioning properly. Especially during these cold winter months, it’s important that you properly warm up and get your blood flowing before starting your workout.
Because warming up is so important, we’re providing you with 5 exercises that you can include in your warm up routine in order to get your muscles and body ready. Each of these exercises involves multiple muscles throughout your body in order to save time and energy. So let’s get to it.
The Spiderman Stretch is a great way to warm up the muscles of lower back and legs as well as all of the joints in between. This stretch is done by lunging forward with one leg and bringing your upper body down to the ground in front of you. In order to get a good stretch, try to put your elbows down to the ground in front of you. If you can’t reach the ground with your elbows, don’t force it. Go as far as you can without jerking your body forward.
Hold this position for a few seconds and then rise up and switch legs. Try doing this exercise for 5-10 reps per side. On each rep you should be able to go down a little further and achieve a better stretch.
Inchworms are a somewhat modified movement of the standard toe touch. In fact the movement begins by reaching down in front of your toes and touching the ground. From there you will walk your hands forward until you are in a plank position with your neck, back and lower body inline. Once you reach the plank position you will then walk forward with your feet until you return to the starting position.
This is a great warm up exercise for your lower back, hamstrings and shoulders. Try to shoot for about ten reps with this exercise as well. You will know if you’re doing it right when you feel it stretching out your hamstrings. If you cannot touch the ground to begin the movement, start by bending your knees slightly until you no longer have to do so.
Bear crawls are another great shoulder warm up and will warm up your entire core as well as your legs. If you’ve ever seen a bear walk on all four legs this is exactly what you’re going to do. You simply walk on your hands and feet. Be sure to keep your body and speed under control to avoid over stressing your shoulder joints.
You’re going to need a little more space for this one so if you’re in your house use a hallway or go out in the yard. If you’re at the gym just be sure that you aren’t going to get in other people’s way while they are trying to do their workout. In other words, don’t go weaving through all the equipment while you’re doing your bear crawls!
Crab walks also require that you have a little more space. They are great for warming up your entire body. Crab walks are done by holding yourself up on your hands and feet and your stomach facing upward. Once you are in this position you can either walk forward or backward or even side to side. Try doing a little bit of each of these to give your muscles a nice warm up.
Your core muscles should be engaged in order to help you keep your balance during this exercise. It may also take some getting use to in order to get your feet and hands moving together.
Burpees are a quick way to get your heart pumping and your blood flowing. They’re also a great way to warm up your body from the shoulders down. If you know how to do burpees try doing about 10-20 as part of your warm up.
If you don’t know how to do burpees, they are done by squatting down, getting into a plank position, doing a pushup, raising back up to your feet and finishing by jumping up in the air and clapping your hands over your head. They should be done under control as well in order to avoid placing excess stress on the shoulder, knee and hip joints.
Try adding these exercises to your warm up routine in order to get your muscles and joints ready for your workout. Remember to keep them under control and avoid using jerking movements. Warming up before your workout is important for avoiding injury and performing at your best. Each of these movements are also great for increasing flexibility, which should also be an important part of your workout routine.