Physical heating methods
It is common to see two types of physical warm-ups in the gym. Those who warm up with 5-10 minutes of cardio and those who do a complex stretching program.
Unfortunately, according to experts, neither of these two options is the best physical warm-up method. The following article aims to detail the best exercises and define which types of a physical warm-ups are better. Static, dynamic, or ballistic?
Physical warm-up What is it for?
The physical warm-up serves to improve oxygenation, strength, and muscular endurance. In the long term, it generates an improvement in sports performance.
Aerobic exercise (cardio) is used to heat the muscles and increase the body’s temperature but not recommended to exceed the time for more than 15 minutes. Since the energy necessary to finish a routine with weights will be expended.
Doing stretching exercises is not recommended when the muscles are cold. This is because the muscles are forced to stretch if they are done abruptly can lead to muscle tear. According to studies (2) (3), the best physics method is static.
One type of warm-up of this type includes exercises such as sit-ups.
Warm-up in the gym Yes or no?
Warming up in the gym is something every athlete should do. Applying some of the physical warm-up methods is essential for the necessary preparation of the body before lifting weights. Warming up the middle or core area is required not to cause injury to the lower back.
Physical warm-up exercises are critical for working the muscles themselves and improving the respiratory system and joints.
Attempting to lift a barbell with loads without preliminary body preparation can have serious consequences. The most frequent are muscle tears when doing basic multi-joint exercises or cervical injuries.
The abrupt transition from rest to high-intensity physical activity is fraught with stress: excessive increases in cortisol levels and pain in the neck or neck.
Types of warm-ups: static, dynamic, and ballistic
There are three types of physical heating: static, dynamic, and ballistic. The characteristics of each one and the justification for why the best is the dynamic one are described below.
Static warm-up is the best method to warm up the body; it includes static exercises where a limb is generally fixed, and the muscles are tensed in a controlled way.
Dynamic stretching consists of a slow repetition of smooth, controlled movements. The ballistic in chaotic movements of the extremities: arms and legs. (2)
The best type of physical warm-up, according to experts, is a static warm-up. This involves a slow active repetition of exercises to activate muscle fibers to allow a gradual and progressive increase in performance in sport.
A dynamic warm-up is the best to prepare the body for physical activity. Unfortunately, this technique is one of the least popular. Statically warming up the middle area (abs) is ideal for preparing the body for hypertrophy, calisthenics, or CrossFit routine.
Physical warm-up exercises
What exercises should I include in a physical warm-up? First of all, it should be made clear that there is no physical warm-up program for every day. At the beginning of the routine, both a beginner and an advanced athlete must adapt the warm-up according to the muscle group to be worked on.
If exercises to strengthen the legs are included, the leg muscles need to be warmed up. If you are going to train the chest and arms, you need warm-up exercises that form the upper half of the body.
However, specific general rules can be followed when heating. First of all, the warm-up duration should not exceed more than 10-15 minutes. Second, you shouldn’t expend too much energy; a little sweat is enough. Finally, warming up the middle or core is essential.
Example of physical warm-up exercises:
- Squats without weight (15 x 3 reps)
- Side Planks (30 seconds each side x 3)
- Front plates (1-minute x 3)
- Hip lift without weight (15 reps x 2)
- Donkey Kicks (15 reps x 2)
Static exercises to warm-up
Static warm-up exercises such as sit-ups (front or side), superman, and in-place lunges are the most effective in activating the midsection—something essential to support the weight without causing injury in a strength routine.
The pushups are also considered one of the static exercises to warm up but should be performed statically. Instead of doing 15 quick pushups, the best way to warm up is to complete 3-5 slow reps or hold the position about 10-15 cm off the ground.
How do warm the joints?
Warming up the joints is key to minimizing the risk of sports injuries. Especially if you are one of those, who spend most of the day in the office, before strength training, the wrists should be warmed up to improve grip in barbell exercises. If exercises such as squats or deadlifts are included, the lower body joints should be warmed up: knees and hips.
Exercises that involve working the muscles of the shoulders, back, and arms involve a warm-up of the upper body. For this, manual rotations can be made circularly. Ballistic heating with random movements is also allowed.
Lastly, traditional pushups or hands-on-the-wall pushups are best for a day where the bench press is part of the routine. We emphasize that heating the joints should increase the range of motion and allow better lubrication of the joints.
Is running well for warming up?
Running and other cardio and aerobic exercises are traditional strategies for warming up. The main task of cardio is to warm up by increasing blood flow and muscle temperature.
On the other hand, we highlight that running is not the only exercise that can be chosen as a cardio activity for a physical warm-up. The bicycle, the elliptical machine, or even the rowing machine exercises with less impact on the joints.
In short, running is good for warming up. The important thing is not to exceed speed. On the other hand, more effective strategies such as static exercises have been confirmed: planks, lunges, and static pushups. Finally, positive effects have been established in reducing anxiety when running outdoors. If you consider buying a treadmill or running with a partner, go for the second option.
- The physical warm-up should be an essential component in a training routine.
- There are three types of heating: ballistic, static, and dynamic. Stationary heating is the best, according to studies.
- A basic rule of thumb for physical warm-up is to prepare both the joints and the muscle groups to be worked. Warming up your legs if you are going to exercise your arms does not make sense.
- Side and front planks are one of the best warm-up exercises. Including them in the routine before training is essential to warm up the middle zone and avoid sports injuries.