Before I get into this, I have to mention that warm ups should be tailored to individual needs (sticking points, mobility restrictions, under active muscles, etc). Some people need a lot of warming up, others not a whole lot. But since I get asked about warming up quite a bit, I thought I’d include a sample of some of my favorite movements I include in a lower body warm up. This is a sample of what you might see on a program of mine or in the Fitbliss App.
Kneeling Cat – Cow: 20 times
Sitting back on your heels, start with hands with them directly under your shoulders. Slowly arch and lift your chin and tailbone to the sky. Then slowly move to a rounded position, tucking your belly butting towards your spine and pushing through your hands. Imagine yourself like a zipper where you zip each vertebra at a time (this is how slow the movement should be).
Dynamic Downdog Calf Stretch – 30 times
Begin in downward facing dog on your hands and feet. As you push through your hands, slowly move your heels up and down to feel a gentle stretch through your hamstrings and calves. Only push as far as you are able.
Kneeling Hip Flexor Stretch: 2 x 30 seconds each leg
First, it’s important to squeeze glutes into a posterior position and only lean forward slightly. It doesn’t take make much leaning forward for an effective hip flexor stretch. Hold for 30 seconds then switch legs.
Side to Side Adductor: 20 times each leg
Starting with your feet wide and toes pointed out, squeeze your glutes and lunge gently from side to side without any pausing. Your movement should be fluid and you should feel a nice stretch along your adductors.
Squat to Open: 20 times each side
Starting in a squat position with your elbows on your knees, twist and reach one arm towards the celling and hold for 2 seconds. Move back to your starting squat position and open towards the other side.
Goblet Squat Hold (light): 10 seconds, 3 times
Holding a light weight close to your chest, lower into a squat position and hold for 10 seconds. Keeping an upright position, practice deep bracing breaths. The band around your knees should fire your glutes.
Lying Banded Side Hold + Pulse: 10 seconds, 10 pulses
With a band around your knees, raise one leg parallel to the ground as you squeeze your glutes and hold for 10 seconds. Then follow with 10 pulses before you switch legs. Careful not to let your leg drift forward or backward – just keep in line with your body.
Side Banded Monster Walks: 3 x 10 each side
With a band around your knees, walk sideways in a high squat position. Take baby steps and keep the band as tight as possible.
KB RDL (light) to groove hip hinge pattern: 20
To start grooving your hip hinge pattern, grab a light weight for some warm up RDLs. Bend at your waist keeping a neutral spine, activate your core and make sure your shoulders aren’t rounding as you keep the weight close to your shins and extend through your hips to stand up.
See it in action here:
There you have it! Perhaps it will give you a good idea of where to start. And if you are interested in coaching, fill out a coaching app and i’ll get in touch with you to chat about your goals.