dynamic warmup

I know you love a good workout! I do, too!

But, if you want to learn how to make every workout more effective, then you need to learn how to most effectively warm up like the pros!

The best way warm up like the pros is to include a dynamic warmup into your workout routine.

What in the world is a dynamic warmup?

Well, basically it’s a series of movements that actively stretch your muscles to get them ready for activity. Done well, a dynamic warmup gets the entire body ready by increasing blood flow, increasing heart rate, and stretching muscles.

This warm up is a little different than the stand in a circle and stretch warmups you may be familiar with, or even done yourself. Various research studies have shown that a static warm up (one where you hold your stretch for prolonged periods with no movement) can actually hinder muscular production and exercise performance.

This is the same dynamic workout I mentioned in The Ultimate 30-Minute HIIT Full-Body Shred that I do before every HIIT workout I do (and teach). It’s quick, simple, and easy to do.

So, if you want to get the best bang for your buck, add this quick 5-6 minute dynamic warmup routine in before every workout. 

You’ll perform each activity for ~15-20 yards, depending on how much space you have. The first 5 I do down and back.

If you want an added warmup component and a slight added degree of difficulty, perform the first 5 activities backward on the way back to the start (e.g. skip backward, butt kicks backward, etc.). If backward is a little challenging, just do them forward again.

Also – remember that it is up to you to make it as difficult or easy as you need. If you aren’t up to high knee jogs yet, just do some high knee marches without the impact of jogging. Modify as needed!

Easy Skips 

warm up

Think back to when you were a kid – those fun, lazy, easy skips. No need to go super fast or jump super high (yet).

High Skips

warm up

Now’s your chance to shine! Skip as high as you can every time. Make sure you land softly and control your movements.

High Knees

warm up

You’re going to jog to the other end by picking your knees up as high as you can toward your chest, and PUMP THOSE ARMS!

You want your steps to be close together so you can get as many high knees in as possible.

Butt Kicks

warm up

Similar to High Knees, but instead of bringing your knees up to your chest, bring your heels up toward your butt. Try to kick your butt with your heels.

Again, these steps should be close together so you can get as many butt kicks in as possible.

Side Shuffles with Arm Swings

dynamic warm up

Pretty self-explanatory. Shuffle sideways and alternate opening your arms up and cross them in front of you.

Make sure you don’t cross your feet.

Frankenstein’s

dynamic warm up

The rest of these are done more slowly. This is also the first of 5 activities you’ll do for only one length then switch activities on the way back.

While walking, reach back and overhead with your right arm. Now, keep your left knee as straight as possible and swing it up toward the front, while you lower your right hand so you can touch your toes in front of you.

Alternate leg/arm and keep walking.

Walking Quad Stretch

dynamic warm up

Pull your foot up behind you toward your rear so you feel a stretch in the front of your thigh.

Now step. Switch legs. And repeat.

Walking Hip Stretch

dynamic warm up

Similar to the Walking Quad Stretch, but instead of pulling your leg up behind you, you will pull it up in front of you. The bottom of your leg will almost be parallel to the floor. Hold your ankle with one hand and your knee with the other and stand straight.

Now step. Switch legs. And repeat.

Walking Spiderman’s

warm up

This is the most complicated.

Take a long step with your right leg. Now reach down to the ground with both hands, making sure your right shoulder and arm come inside your right leg. Now, while keeping your left leg mostly straight, lower your hips toward the ground.

Now start standing up. Bring your right hand outside your leg. Keep your fingers on the ground. Pull your right toes up toward your nose. And rock back.

Now step. Switch legs. And repeat.

Walking Side-to-Side Stretch

warm up

Face sideways. Take a long step with your right leg. Shift your weight toward your right leg. Then back to the left. Now keep your right foot in the same location and turn around so you are facing the other direction, but your left foot has moved further down the path (sort of like “itsy-bitsy-spider”).

Keep switching legs/directions until you reach the end.

You did it! Now you’re ready to really get on it!

Let’s Get FIT Together!