Specific warm up time wasting rubbish

This is a common question for me, what’s the best warm up for weightlifting, workouts, running, deadlifts etc. I’ll fire a couple of ideas out there and then give my honest opinion at the end.

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So let’s say we have the deadlift, it’s a big COMPOUND movement, categorised as a pull, bilateral, that is generally trained with heavy loads. Ok, so we need Glute activation, warm up the hamstrings, and some core activation. That could look like this:

1. Couch stretch 30 secs per side
2. Glute bridge 3×20
3. Plank 1 minute
4. Kettlebell swing 3×20
5. Stiff legged deadlift
6. Side plank left
7. Side plank right
8. Warm up sets

So there is some of the important factors taken into consideration, but what if we have an athlete that was training heavily the day before?? Surely they may need some more attention!! Ok, how about this:

Foam rolling
1. Quads
2. Adductors
3. Hamstrings
4. Calves
5. Lats
6. Glutes

Then:
1. Couch stretch 30 secs per side
2. Glute bridge 3×20
3. Plank 1 minute
4. Kettlebell swing 3×20
5. Stiff legged deadlift
6. Side plank left
7. Side plank right
8. Warm up sets

Ok, stiffness is taken care of, hmmm, what about injury history? Previous knee injury on one side? Glute not firing correctly on that side? Ok we’ll need some single leg work then!

So:
Foam rolling
1. Quads
2. Adductors
3. Hamstrings
4. Calves
5. Lats
6. Glutes

Then:
1. Couch stretch 30 secs per side
2. Glute bridge 3×20
3. Plank 1 minute
4. Kettlebell swing 3×20
5. Stiff legged deadlift
6. Side plank left
7. Side plank right
8. Alternating lunges
9. Banded kickbacks
10. Fire hydrants
11. Banded Crab walks
12. Clam shells
13. Step ups
14. Warm up sets

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And now for Tom Morrisons opinion:

You’re taking so long why don’t you program a fucking twenty minute magic carpet ride while you’re at it.

You can see how when you start some serious consideration, warm ups can start becoming ridiculous and time consuming. It’s partially down to learning more, or the “fear factor” of impending injuries, but honestly, in all my experience the people that get injured the most are the ones foam rolling that tightness out (that they read about so most definitely have). The BEST thing about this is, look back over those example warm ups and start to add pound signs beside them. Don’t even dare disagree that the more shit I write down the more “value” it would seem to have to consumers and eager gym go-ers.

Here’s my deadlift warm up:

1. Single leg deadlift
2. Suitcase deadlift
3. Light deadlift
4. Go.

If it’s cold add “jump about like a clown for a bit”

Why? Because I moved first thing in the morning, I did a routine based on how I feel and took all my joints through their full ranges. I full well know from that point that I am ready to do anything that day. If something does crop up I work it out with an exercise, not poking and prodding at myself with glorified sex toys.

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Overcomplicated fancy things that FEEL like they work at the time eventually become crutches, there is no perfect warm up, working EVERY DAY on a body that moves efficiently and well is the key.

Few are at that point of “feeling” their way through a warm up though… so for now, keep doing your regular warm ups. Just an idea for you to think about.