Whether you’re a professional athlete or an amateur at the gym, the one thing that you just cannot skip is a warm up routine before starting your workout. A dynamic warm up can help you get your blood pumping and help raise your body temperature so that your body is ready to take on heavy work outs. Dynamic warm ups are called so because they use stretches while you’re in motion. The stretch is not “held” but rather is a part of the whole movement. Some of the benefits of dynamic warm ups include:
Activates muscles you will use during your workout
Improves range of motion
Challenges your balance and coordination
Enhances muscular performance and power
7 Dynamic Warm-Up Exercises
1. Hip Stretch With A Twist
This is an exceptional stretch, especially for working professionals who sit a lot during the day. It helps open up the hips and groin while stretching the core, upper, and middle back.
Start in the push-up position and bring your right foot up to your right hand while keeping your hips down and lower back flat.
Take your left hand, twist to your left while extending your arm and reaching toward the sky. Come back to the starting push-up position and repeat on the other side.
A possible substitution for this exercise would be a side lunge to help work on your lateral movement.
2. High Kicks
High kicks help warm-up the hamstrings and improve range of motion. You can do them while alternating as you walk, or stationary while focusing on one side at a time.
If starting with your right leg, extend your left arm straight out. Kick your leg up while keeping your leg and hand straight so that your toes hit your palm.
Try to progressively kick higher, but complete this exercise while staying under control.
3. Jump Lunges
Jump lunges are another great plyometric exercise for warming up the lower body. This exercise also requires balance to help activate your stabilizer muscles in your legs and hips.
With your hands at your sides or behind your head, start with one foot extended forward and one behind. Drop your hips downward and forcibly jump into the air.
While you are in the air, switch your legs so that your forward leg is now behind you and your back leg is now in front of you.
4. Lunge With A Twist
As the name implies, this is a combination of two different moves: a forward lunge and a horizontal twist.
The forward lunge helps stretch the hip flexors and activates the legs, glutes, and hips, while the twist stretches out the upper and middle back and activates core rotation.
As you do the lunge, step forward, then drop your hips. You shouldn’t try to lunge too far forward so your front knee extends far beyond your toes.
After you have lunged, slowly twist toward the side you are lunging for a more intense hip flexor stretch.
A T-Push Up is a great exercise to help warm-up your upper body, especially the shoulders, while also activating your entire core.
Start out in the push-up position, and then lower yourself down towards the ground.
As you push back up, extend your right arm toward the sky while keeping your left arm stable and your hips from moving down, or up.
Bring your arm back to the starting position, do another push-up, and then repeat with the left arm.
6. Jump Squats
Jump squats are a great plyometric exercise for warming up the lower body. Because the exercise is fast, it requires a greater degree of force production and power than the other exercises on this list, so it’s a more advanced warm-up exercise.
Stand up with your feet about shoulder width apart while holding your hands behind your head, or on your hips.
Squat down until the hips are about parallel with the ground, then forcibly jump off the ground. Land softly and repeat the jump.
7. Knee To Chest
This exercise mimics the top of a running stride as you bring your knee toward your chest before striking the foot toward the ground. You can alternate each leg while stationary or do it while walking forward.
Focus on bringing the knee cap into the chest by hugging your shin while stepping on your toes with your opposite foot, which will give you more leverage.