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To warm up or not to warm up - T ...

Posted Dec 24 2009 8:42am
To warm up or not to warm up - That is the question...???

A response to a question on the forum on whether or not to warm up prior to training.

Define "warm-up"? In "big box gym" parlance it is 10 minutes on a treadmill and some static stretching. I have even run into some that say they need 30-40 minutes before they are "ready" to train. Some will say not to "warm-up". Citing the need of survival reaction or the law enforcement officer that needs to go from "zero to hero" in an instance.
Are you a member of military or law enforcement? And does it matter
As has been noted by Zachriah and some others - in moments of survival reaction your body takes care of the warm up (endocrine response etc...)
The answer is somewhere in the middle but not anywhere near traditional recommendations - What if your everyday movement ability and skill was high enough so you were "prepared" after a brief amount of preparation specific to the goals of the session and your individual movement issues?
In Super Joints, Pavel recommends a daily morning routine is advocated so that your body will "remember" this movement work and be better prepared for the day. Z health is a daily routine. We move everyday so why shouldn't we strive for excellent movement everyday. A "warm up" is not an excuse to avoid building full and superb joint mobility and movement skill - but that is precisely what people use a warm up for - they walk around with far (and I mean FAR) from optimal movement skill but feel prepared to train after a "warm up" that provides a "false" increase in their movement. There is a reason an FMS screen is performed without warm up - to catch your true movement - not your warm ups movement. There is a reason Z and Super Joints are daily. Build your movement skill - remove restrictions and target the areas that need attention.

When I am lifting (surgery is a bummer) I don't "warm up" - I perform Movement prep and then Progress into my training. Movement prep might take the form of some ASLR work from FMS and a brief Z session focused on some areas I need to "touch base" with prior to loading them. Then it is a progressive build up to my goal lift.
Lets say that it is squat day - Bodyweight squats are up first, Then an unloaded barbell, then 135 and so on....
Not 15 reps but 4-6 focusing on perfect groove and pattern. Your jumps during your "build up" might be different but when I was squatting "heavy" (for me) it would be something like bodyweight, 135, 225, 315, 365, 405 and by that time I was at or nearing my working weights and was ready to hit my sets with precision and focus. Not fatigued by 4-6 sets of 1-15 reps. Build up instead of "warm up".

Build movement skill and movement ability that is "permanent" a solid foundation that is the base for and supports your goals and your movement potential - don't rely on a "warm up" but rather create a situation where you prepare for the demands of the session.

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