Exercise Injuries – Best warmups to avoid them

Contrary to popular belief, stretching/foam rolling or performing ‘activation’ exercises aren’t as beneficial as we thought they were when it comes to being used as a warm up before performing exercise. Feel free however to still incorporate these into your warm up as they don’t cause any harm!

However, the best and most simple warm up to perform is the activity you wish to perform, but at a much lesser load. For example, if you plan to run, your warm up will include walking and then jogging, until your joints and body feels like it is ready to perform run. 

If you plan to squat, perform some body weight squats and then a few sets with a much lighter load before moving on to your working set.

If you think about it, what is better for priming your body to perform a specific exercise? Performing the exact same exercise under light load and much easier conditions? Or to perform ‘warm up’ exercises which may include usage of the muscles that you are planning to use but not in a directly comparable way. 

Performing the exact exercise or activity you wish to perform but at a much lower load is the best way to prime the nervous system and mobilise your joints exactly for the activity at hand. 

So now you know, next time you’re in the gym planning to perform a heavy lift, or about to go off on your run or play your favourite sport, incorporate performing the activity itself in your warmup. 

See a physiotherapist/exercise physiologist to help you prevent injuries. If you get injured, come see us. We have the best equipment and experience to help you recover and to educate you to prevent future injuries.

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