Before any workout or intense sports activity, it is so important to stretch and have a proper warm-up. This a good way to get mentally and physically prepared for better performance, and it will also help prevent injuries such as muscle strains or chronic joint pain.

What is a Dynamic Warm-Up?

At CORE Physical Therapy, we recommend what’s known as a “dynamic” warm-up. This is a specific sequence of movements that you can do prior to your physical activity. The goal is to increase blood flow, get the muscles properly stretched out, increase flexibility and improve functional mobility in your joints.

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A dynamic warm-up is certainly more than jogging in place for a few minutes or doing a few simple static stretches on the sideline. Static stretches can help a little before exercise, but they are generally more effective after the workout. Take time to hold your stretches for at least 20-30 seconds after you are done exercising.

More Effective than Static Stretching

Prior to your exercise, however, a dynamic warm-up will be so much more effective than static stretches. A dynamic warm-up will focus on full-body movement with multiple muscle groups being worked on at once. It should take somewhere between 5 and 15 minutes to complete before your main workout.

The activities done in a dynamic warm-up will vary based on the individual and the sport/exercise he or she is about to partake in. This warm-up should start slowly with gentle activities and then build up with each movement to a more high-impact finish. It should follow a specific series of activities each time you do a dynamic warm-up before your game. Over time, it simply becomes part of your normal routine.

Improve Performance and Prevent Injury

When done right, a dynamic warm-up can improve your athletic performance and also help prevent injury. Your body and muscle temperatures will go up. This increases the oxygen and blood flow throughout your body. Your muscles and joints will be stretched out properly before you get into the more intense activity.

Working with a physical therapist or sports trainer can help you develop your own dynamic warm-up routine that will be designed for your age, gender, body type, and intended sports activity. Whether you play golf on the weekends or practice competitive gymnastics every day, you can benefit from a dynamic warm-up.

CORE Physical Therapy is here to help you improve your health and get the most out of your physical activity. Our therapists can help you determine a dynamic warm-up plan along with diet and nutrition plans to maximize your athletic results and prevent serious injuries. Contact us today.