Warm-ups are arguably one of the most important aspects of any exercise regimen as it primes your muscles for what’s to come in a routine. Without warm-ups, your body is more susceptible to injuries. In addition, warm-ups provide a practice round for some of the more complex movements you may be completing in the workout. It’s kind of like the trial run before the real thing. If you just jump in, you risk tearing or straining a tight muscle. This could lead to less workouts and more recovery time, so it’s crucial to take the time to prepare your body.
Basic and Effective Warm-Up Routine Movements
Go through 10-15 repetitions of each of these moves to ensure an adequate warm-up before you perform any strength or cardio routines. These moves are easy to do at a gym, outside, or even in your home. Remember, it’s important to be gentle during your warm-ups. This isn’t the time to push yourself, so remind yourself of this goal as you go through the routine.
- Make sure you have enough space to move in a forward motion across the ground.
- You will want to hike your right knee up to your chest.
- As you lower your right knee, you’ll simultaneously hike your left knee up to your chest.
- Complete this pattern in a fluid series.
- To decrease the intensity of the movement, you can perform the knee hikes in place.
This movement raises the heart rate and stretches out the leg and butt muscles.
- A warm-up isn’t complete without some classic butt kicks.
- Again, make sure that you have enough space to move forward.
- This movement helps to engage the hamstring and butt muscles so they are ready to go for the workout.
- Kick your right foot up to the right side of your butt.
- As you lower it, simultaneously kick your left foot up to the left side of your butt.
- Complete this pattern quickly to fire up the muscles.
- Start in the plank position with hands below shoulders and a neutral neck.
- Raise your right arm up straight to the ceiling as you open the side of your body to the right side.
- Hold for a couple of counts and then lower back into the plank position.
- From there, raise your left arm straight up to the ceiling as you open the side of your body to the left side.
- Hold this side for a couple of counts and come back to the start for one repetition.
This move works to open up the chest, shoulder, and arm muscles so you are ready to tackle any upper-body exercises.
Squats are the ultimate full-body exercise, so they are important to include in any warm-up.
- Start in a hip-width standing position with feet pointed outward at 45-degree angles.
- Lower your butt back and down until your knees are at a 90-degree angle in relation to the ground.
- Contract your glutes as you rise back to the standing position for one repetition.
Arm circles are simple, yet effective.
- Start in a standing position and reach both arms out to your sides.
- Simultaneously circle them forward to stretch and increase mobility in the shoulder joints.
You can increase the size of the arm circles or reverse the direction of the circles to stretch out different parts of the shoulder muscle.
These are similar to the arm circles in that they work to open up the shoulder joints and muscles. In addition, they give the chest a good stretch.
- Begin in a standing position with both arms straight outward to each side.
- Simultaneously swing each arm toward midline and crossing them at the center.
- Swing them back out to the starting position for one repetition.
Lunges In Place
This move stretches out the legs and specifically warms up the inner thigh and hip flexor muscles.
- Begin in a standing position and step your right foot forward.
- Bend the right knee into a 90-degree angle and hold to open up the hip.
- Step back to the starting position and repeat on the same lunge forward on the left side to complete one repetition.