16 Warm-Up Moves You Should Do Before Every Workout


Health

Because no one likes a pulled hammie.

Posted on March 29, 2017, 18:01 GMT

Static stretching before
a workout probably isn’t a great idea.

Jacoblund / Getty Images

The point of a warm-up is to prepare your body to
exercise, but unfortunately, static stretching
— lengthening a muscle till you feel a pull or minor
discomfort and holding the position for about 30 seconds
— can’t get the job done. “Static stretching before
exercise has been shown to actually increase injury risk
while decreasing performance,”
Jason Fitzgerald, USATF-certified coach and founder
of
Strength Running explains to BuzzFeed Health via
email. “Plus, it doesn’t accomplish the goals of a
warm-up: increasing heart rate, perspiration, and blood
flow while lubricating joints and increasing muscle
temperature.”

But that’s where a dynamic warm-up — like the moves below
— come in. They will get your body ready to work
out. They were selected by Fitzgerald for BuzzFeed’s

4 Weeks to 5K Challenge (which, btw, you can sign up
for anytime), so they’re specifically awesome for cardio
workouts, but you can use them to warm up before any
exercise. (If you’re doing any heavy lifting, you’ll want
add some more specific moves to prep you to move heavy
weight, like
these.)

Just choose 3-4 of the
moves below and run through them before you start
exercising.

1. Donkey kicks

Caity Arthur / BuzzFeed

Get on all fours with your wrists under your shoulders
and knees under your hips. Keeping your knee bent at 90
degrees, lift one leg behind you until it reaches hip
height. Squeeze your glutes and keep your foot flexed and
your back straight. Do 15 reps, then switch sides and
repeat.

2. Single-leg deadlift

Caity Arthur / BuzzFeed

With a slight bend in the knee of your weight-bearing
leg, pull your shoulders back and keep your hips squared
as you hinge at the hips, bending over and reaching
toward the floor. Keep your back flat. Reach until you
feel a slight stretch in your hamstring. Do 15 reps, then
switch sides and repeat.

3. Hurdle mobility

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With your wrists directly under your shoulders and knees
under your hips, bend one knee about 90 degrees. Move
your leg (from the hip) in a circular motion first
counter clockwise, then clockwise, keeping your back
flat. That’s one rep. Do 15 reps, then switch sides and
repeat.

4. Iron Cross

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Lie on your back with your arms outstretched and your
shoulders and upper back against the floor. Rotating at
the hip and torso, bring one leg across your body
diagonally toward the opposite hand. Alternate sides and
repeat till you’ve done 15 on each side.

5. High-knee skips

Caity Arthur / BuzzFeed

As you push off one foot, bring the opposite knee towards
your chest. Stand tall as you swing your arms for
momentum and balance, and land on the balls of your feet.
Continue until you’ve brought each knee up 15 times.

6. Knee hugs

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Stand tall with your feet hip-width apart. Keep your
weight-bearing leg straight while bringing your knee as
close to your chest as your flexibility allows. Alternate
sides and repeat till you’ve done 15 on each side.

7. Front leg swings

Caity Arthur / BuzzFeed

Lightly hold a chair or wall for support with your right
hand. Stand tall, squeezing your abs and glutes as you
swing your left leg forward, maintaining a straight back
and squared hips. Swing with control and bring your leg
back to the start position (not behind you). Do 15 reps,
then switch sides and repeat.

8. Lunge and twist

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Stand tall with your feet hip-width apart. Lunge forward
keeping your back straight, your shoulders over your
hips, and your front knee in line with (and not extending
past) your toes. Lower your body until your back knee is
hovering just above the floor. Squeeze your abs and twist
from the torso towards your front leg. Alternate sides
and repeat till you’ve done 15 on each side.

9. Mountain climbers

Caity Arthur / BuzzFeed

In a push-up position with your wrists under your
shoulders and your feet hip-width apart, bring one knee
toward the inside of your elbow. Keep your back straight
and neck neutral while squeezing both your abs and
glutes. Alternate sides and repeat till you’ve done 15 on
each side.

10. Scorpion

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Lie on your stomach keeping your shoulders and chest as
close to the floor as possible and your arms
outstretched. Squeeze your left glute and from your hips
(with minimal torso rotation) bring your left leg up and
across your body diagonally with your toes pointing
toward your right hand. Alternate sides and repeat till
you’ve done 15 on each side.

11. Lateral leg swings

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Place your arms on a wall or chair for support. With your
arms shoulder-width apart, squeeze your abs and keep your
torso still as you swing your leg side to side from your
hips. Do 15 reps, then switch sides and repeat.

12. Side lunge

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With your toes pointing forward, your chest up and your
back straight, push your hips back, and take a big
lateral step with your right foot. As you lower into a
lunge, bend your right knee, ensuring it’s in line with
your toes. Do 15 reps, then switch sides and repeat.

13. Squat

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With your feet shoulder-width apart and your toes pointed
forward or slightly out, keep your chest tall and push
your hips back as you lower into a squat. Go only as deep
as your flexibility allows. Maintain a straight back and
keep your knees in line with your toes. Do 15 reps.

14. Zombie walk

Caity Arthur / BuzzFeed

Stand tall with your arms straight in front of you (palms
facing the floor). Squeeze your abs and glutes. Keeping
one leg straight, swing it toward your hand while
maintaining a straight back. Swing only as high as your
flexibility allows. Alternate sides and repeat till
you’ve done 15 on each side.

15. Walking lunge

Caity Arthur / BuzzFeed

Stand tall with your feet hip-width apart. Take a step
forward as you lower your body, keeping your hips squared
and shoulders directly over your hips. Return to standing
by pushing up through your midfoot. Alternate sides and
repeat till you’ve done 15 on each side.

16. Groiners

Caity Arthur / BuzzFeed

With your knees bent (about 45 degrees) and heels on the
floor, engage your abs as you swing your legs to the
side. Repeat, alternating sides, till you’ve done 30 on
each side.

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