Those only starting their fitness journey may scoff at the idea of doing warm-up exercises at first.
The entire concept does seem a little funny to the uninitiated: warm-up exercises are exercises that you do… before exercising.
It’s all too easy to see it as an unnecessary chore, but warming up offers a host of benefits that include, chiefly, lowering one’s risk of injury while working out.
The importance of warming up can’t be overstated, regardless of the type of physical activity that you’ll be doing.
Here is a list of simple warm-up exercises that total beginners can easily do. Before doing your warm-up, make sure that you’re properly attired for exercise in moisture-wicking clothes, athletic socks, and shoes.
1. Boxing Guard Crunches
This is a great upper body warmup to work the abs and get them nice and fired up. Start with your feet planted wide, about shoulder-width. Related.
Raise your fists to your face in the boxing guard position, then start moving from side to side, drawing your shoulders slightly forward to activate the abdominal muscles.
2. Front Jabs
Activate the arms by jabbing your fists forward, alternating between the left and right fists. It’s easy to move into front jabs from boxing guard crunches; just keep your feet fixed in the same position.
Make sure that you keep your elbows soft as well so as not to damage them. Practice control of your jabs by stopping just short of fully extending your arm.
After a few reps, start bringing your knees in with each jab, releasing at the heel with each one thrown. The left knee comes in when the left fist jabs out, and vice versa.
Squats are a great way to engage multiple muscles in the lower body, including the quads or quadriceps, found in the front of the thighs, the hamstrings, and the glutes or gluteal muscles that make up your rear.
Stand with your feet at least hip-width apart or wider, and make sure that your toes are facing forward. Use your core and bend your knees to lower your torso to at least knee-level or lower if you can.
While doing this, make sure that you keep your back straight. Inhale on the way down and exhale on the way up.
4. Jogging in Place
Regular jogging in place is one of the simplest warmup exercises that you can do. It doesn’t involve anything fancy, just jog! Make sure that you land nice and softly; don’t stomp or bring your feet down too hard. As much as possible, keep your knees slightly bent the entire time, too.
The basic movement of jumping in place is, in fact, a plyometric movement commonly used by athletes to increase power and develop strength in the lower body. As a warm-up exercise, it’s a great one for almost every muscle group.
Stand with your legs apart, toes facing forward. Bend down as though you were going into a squat, keeping your core tight and your knees over your ankles. Use your lower body to get airborne, making sure to land softly on the balls of your feet and on slightly bent knees.
You can use your arms to propel yourself in the air; hold your arms back when you’re down and swing them upwards when you jump.
6. Front Kicks
Front kicks are another great way to engage the muscles in the lower body. Start with your feet slightly apart, then kick your leg straight out in front of your hip.
Alternate between the left and right legs, keeping your knees soft and making sure you do not overextend or snap your leg out too far. To keep the momentum going, keep your core and leg muscles engaged.
You can combine these exercises to create a basic warm-up routine. Experts agree that your warm-up should be at least 5 to 10 minutes long.
To keep time, use the timer function on your smartphone or smartwatch if you have it. Doing each of these exercises for 1 minute should give you a full 6-minute warm-up. Have a great workout and stay safe!
About The Author:
Darwin Castro is fascinated by fashion and how clothing trends serve as a reflection of the ever-changing human experience. He’s a digital marketer by day, but he makes sure to keep a close eye on the latest events and activities in the most fashionable cities in the world.