By Wendy Cope
Do you ever feel like it takes a hot minute for your body to work out the creaks when you exercise? Before any training session, the body needs to be prepped for movement, and what better way to do that than with dynamic stretches to bring blood into the muscles and get that synovial fluid into the joints? Here are Regional Group Fitness Manager Wendy Cope’s favorite warmup movements to kick your workout into gear!
- Squat to Calf Raise with Goalpost Arms. Want to supercharge yourself from head to toe? This full-body opening movement brings blood to the entire system by activating the glutes and quads, waking up the calves and Achilles tendons, and opening the chest and back. First, squat back into the heels, sweeping the arms back. Next, raise up onto the toes, swinging the arms up and open into goalposts, opening the chest and activating the back.
- Heel Sweeps. Loosen up those tight hammies with this simple track-and-field-based move. Tap alternating heels forward, sweeping the arms towards the heels and forward to activate the hamstrings and calves.
- Alternating Predator Tap Jacks. Open up your airways and raise your heart rate with this low-impact cardio exercise. Tap the toes out to the sides one at a time, opening the arms out to the sides with each tap, and breathe easy!
- Knee Hugs. Loosen up the back with a hug. Lift one knee into the chest at a time, hugging the knee in with both arms to release the back and activate hip flexors.
- Knee Circles. Happy hips make even the most grueling workout manageable! Circle alternating knees up and outwards in order to create mobility through the hips. For more dynamic movement, add a squat in between hip circles before alternating sides.
To round out a warmup, add some jacks, jump ropes, or high knee lifts to bring the heart rate up and lower your risk of injury for the workout to come!
Wendy Cope is Crunch Fitness’ Southeast Regional Group Fitness Manager and a Yoga Master Trainer.
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