Earlier this year, I started a personal challenge to deadlift 400# (lifting a weight from the floor to waist height). To accomplish this feat, I incorporated heavy leg training into my workout routines two to three times per week. Within weeks, I became significantly stronger, and after 30 days, I had increased my maximum deadlift by over 100 pounds. When training three times each week, I was often sore at the beginning of the workout. My muscles were rebuilding and adapting to new loads. For this reason, it was vitally important to warm-up my tissues prior to training.
In this post, I discuss four of my favorite exercises that I routinely performed before weight training. While I use the deadlift as the example exercise, the exercises and principles apply to all lower body movements.
Components of a Good Warm-up
A proper warm-up has numerous health benefits:
Each of these benefits relate back to one primary purpose: injury prevention.
Example Warm-up Routine 1
Below are four warm-up exercises I performed prior to my deadlift routine.
Example Warm-up Routine 2
While I regularly performed the four exercises above, I have also included another sample routine below. Incorporating full body movements such as squats, romanian deadlifts (RDLs), and treadmill jogging are great ways to raise core temperature and bring blood flow to the entire body.
As individuals get older, the tissue become less pliable and less elastic. Warming up the bodies tissue prior to any strenuous exercise is important for injury prevention. Invest 5-10 minutes in a foundational warm-up routine- your workout will feel stronger and your body will thank you afterward!
Post written by:
Dr. Jim Heafner PT, DPT, OCS
Owner of Heafner Health Physical Therapy