Warm up and Cool down
Did you know that you should Warm up and Cool down, before and after Exercise? These are usually over looked by the majority of people that take part in any form of Exercise. The little time required to perform these is more than adequately offset by the benefits that they give. Each serves a purpose that can assist in your overall performance, and help avoid injuries.
Lets look at each one in turn,
WARM UPS. These are done before you start your Workout Routines or Training Session. By performing a Warm Up you will be preparing your mind and body for the up coming activity.
The aim of an effective Warm Up is to help you,Raise your Body temperature.Increase your rate of Breathing.Increase your Heart Rate.Move blood to the Working Muscles.Increase Muscle Movement. (Range of Motion)to be in the right mind set. (Mental Preparation)
WHAT ACTIVITIES SHOULD YOU DO FOR AN EFFECTIVE WARM UP?
Your Warm up should consist of movements that are similar or mimic the activity you are about to do. These movements should be done at a lower intensity and impact, slower rate and speed. For example, Walking before Jogging or light dynamic stretching before Aerobics.
It only takes about 10 minutes to do your Warm up and then you can gradually increase your workload up towards your desired Workout or Training intensity.
YOU'VE COMPLETED A GREAT WORKOUT AND NOW IT'S TIME TO COOL DOWN
COOL DOWN. This is as the name suggests, a “Cool Down”. You start to decrease your level of intensity and return your body to its resting state. An effective Cool Down will,Lower your Heart Rate.Lower your Breathing Rate.Help reduce your Body Temperature.Helps remove any Lactic Acid build up. (Anaerobic threshold)and be the perfect opportunity to do some Stretching Exercises.
As your body returns to its normal state you should take this opportunity to do some stretching. Your Muscles and Joints are warm and have a greater receptiveness to Stretching Exercises. If you are doing your Workouts without a partner, I suggest that you do some Static Stretching, especially to the major Muscle Groups that you targeted during Exercise. You should also stretch as many Muscles as you can to gain an optimal long-term benefit.
Hold each stretch for approximately 30 seconds (a little longer if you have the time) and only to a point that you feel that your Muscle is tender. You may feel a little discomfort, this is only natural, but if it becomes painful decrease the amount of stretch that you are applying.
Always remember the rule of,”IF IT HURTS, DO NOT DO IT”.
The Warm Up and Cool Down, should be viewed as an integral part of any Workout Routine or Training Session. You wouldn’t miss out on doing an Exercise that you loved, that you knew was good for you or would help you make improvements and that’s exactly what Warming up and Cooling down can do for you.
Warm Ups and Cool Downs offer a great return on the time invested by,Reducing Muscle Soreness. Increasing Muscle Flexibility. Reducing the chance of Injury. Ensuring proper Range of Motion.
So just put a little time aside at the beginning and end of your Workout Routines and notice the difference that a great Warm up and Cool down can make.”You’ll feel all the better for it!”
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