I get asked about warming up all the time. Whether you are a beach or indoor player, warming up is an integral part of training. Many times players make the mistake of thinking that, just because it is hot outside, that you don’t need to warm up. This is inaccurate. Your body needs to warm up in full range of motion and when you are done with your warm-up, you should be sweating.
There are two types of warm-ups: Static stretching and Dynamic warm-ups. Static stretching happens when you pick a stretching position, and then “hold for 30-45 seconds” and switch. This type of stretching should NOT be done at the beginning of a workout for several reasons (the muscles are not warm yet and some studies have show that this actually decreases muscle strength!). Instead, you should incorporate DYNAMIC warm-ups in you training regimen. A dynamic warm-up allows for increased blood flow throughout the body, as well as loosening up muscles and tendons to aid in avoiding injury.
Here is a warm-up that you can do before playing. This warm-up is what I used to do (and still do) before playing and was put together by Rehab United. This should be done from sideline to sideline (down and back is one) in the sand.
- Jog (2) – increase speed on the second lap
- Back Pedal (2) – regular back pedal for the first lap. For the second lap, focus on exaggerating the kick back and reaching the leg back)
- Shuffle (1) – be sure to stay facing the same way down and back so you work both legs
- Carioca (2) – Regular down and back the first time (be sure to stay facing the same way). For the second lap, focus on doing a high knee for the across the body with the front foot)
- High Knee Progression (1 sideline – right knee only; 1 sideline – left knee only, 1 sideline – alternate left and right knee, 1 sideline – fast pace)
- Butt Kickers (1) – bend knees when you are jogging so that the heel of your foot touches your gluteus maximus
- Skips (2) – 1 sideline with high skips; 1 sideline skipping for distance
- High Kick Progression (3) – One sideline forward kicks, one sideline side kicks and one sideline back kicks
- Hip Swing Progression (1 sideline outside; 1 sideline inside) Outside hip swings require you to start with you knee at a 90 degree angle and internally rotate it into your body. The Inside hip swings require you to start with bot of your feet facing forward and then take one knee at a 90 degree angle and externally rotate it.
- Jump Starts (3) –
- Forward-back jump to sprint (1) – Start with feet perpendicular to the sideline and jump back and forth over the sideline as fast as you can. If you have someone there with you, have them say GO at some point (after you have done 8-12 jumps) at which point you will sprint to the other sideline. This helps to work on reaction. If you are by yourself, sprint after 8-12 jumps. Repeat
- Side-to-side jump to sprint (1) – Start with feet parallel to the sideline and jump side to side (repeat) be sure to face the same way for both so that you work on kicking off of both legs at the start
- Twisting Jump to sprint (1) – Start with feet perpendicular to the sideline and jump twisting lower body to the left and then jump and twist lower body to the right. repeat going as fast as you can for 8-12 and then sprint to other sideline (repeat)
For more details, be sure to look at the video demonstrations of each of these exercises. Next month we will talk about periodizing your workout and what exercises you should be doing at various points throughout your season (preseason, in-season, and postseason).