Why Warm-Ups Are (Still) So Important

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What is a warm-up?

A warm-up is a light fitness session that takes place before a workout. Warm-ups are crucial for a safe and effective workout, essentially priming the body and mind for the training ahead. Before your next workout, think about these benefits: 

How exactly will a warm-up help me work out?

Your warm-up will vary depending on your WOD. A standard CrossFit warm-up will combine a mix of movements, often specific to the areas of the body you will work the most that day. 

More specifically, a good warm-up: 

PREVENTS
  • Workout “shock” – putting a strain on our hearts and muscles by jumping into intense workouts too quickly
  • Sudden muscle strain –if you have ever pulled a hamstring, you know that nothing is worth that painful strain!
INCREASES
  • Cardiorespiratory rate- a.k.a gets that heart pumping all that lovely blood and oxygen throughout your body
  • Size of blood vessels- on a vascular level, this allows for more blood to flow in a shorter amount of time
  • Blood flow to muscles- to help with flexibility and range of motion
  • Blood flow to the brain- giving you mental clarity
  • Flexibility- to keep it moving
  • Endurance – to keep going
REDUCES
  • Chance of injury
  • Stress- on your heart, body, and mind
  • Muscle soreness
  • Muscle stiffness
IMPROVES
  • Mental Fortitude
  • Neurotransmitter performanceyour muscles telling your brain how they’re doing
  • Communication of your central nervous system (CNS) with your muscles
  • Grasp of the fundamentals
ELEVATES
  • Body Temperature
ENCOURAGES
  • Mobility of key positions – especially for your WOD
  • Light sweating – to ease into your workout
  • Learning – this is a chance to learn what movements should look/feel like
  • Opportunities to catch and correct any faults

Remember not to breeze through any part of your warmup. Pay close attention to how your body and muscles are responding to each set, and how you can apply this to your WOD. A great start will get you even better results! 

Have a favorite warm-up to share? We’d love to hear about it here.
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