I’ve put lots of thought into the Dynamic Warm-up concepts and exercises we utilize here at Performance U. I’ve even produced not one, not two, but three DVDs, each displaying the exact Warm Up strategies we use everyday to ensure our clients and athletes are able to optimize performance every time they train or compete. You can get all three of my Warm-Up Progressions DVDs at a special discount package price here.

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In addition to using all the great exercises and techniques displayed in the Warm Up Progressions Vol.1-3 DVD series. There are also three very quick and easy things you can start doing today to imporve the effectiveness of your Dynamic Warm up. Here they are…

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Tip #1 – Go Barefoot!

Take off your shoes and go barefoot when you warm-up! Put simply, you have the most proprioceptive receptors in your feet. So, exposing your feet to the ground without the support of  shoes will force your CNS to up-regulate (work more) to accommodate the additional balance demands and positional changes happening as you move through your warm up exercises.

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As my friend, Coach Martin Rooney of TrainingforWarriors.com has said “imagine how dull your sense of touch would be if you wore gloves all day long”. The same rules apply to your feet. So, take off your shoes and free up those feet!

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Note: Wearing Vibrams is okay. But, I still prefer going completely barefoot if you can.

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Tip #2 – Wear a Sweat Shirt and Sweat Pants!

This is one of those tips that’s so obvious, I’m not sure why everyone’s not already using it!

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As the name implies, one part of a warm up is to elevate your body temperature. What better way to help you “get warmer” than to perform all of your Dynamic Warm exercises while wearing something like sweat clothes?

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Lately, I’ve been wearing sweat clothes while warming up before my workouts and I feel my warm ups are much more effective because I’m able to get a nice light sweat going. Where as before, when I didn’t wear the sweat clothes, I wasn’t sweating at all before my workout started.

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Tips #3 – Wear a Skull Cap or Hoody!

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It’s no secret that we lose body heat from our head. But, I once thought (as many of us do) that “we lose the majority of our body heat from our head”. This is actually a myth! Check out the following statements from an article titled “Scientists debunk the myth that you lose most heat through your head” written by Ian Sample, science correspondent for the The Guardian:

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“Closer inspection of heat loss in the hatless, however, reveals the claim to be nonsense, say scientists who have dispelled this and five other modern myths.

They traced the origins of the hat-wearing advice back to a US army survival manual from 1970 which strongly recommended covering the head when it is cold, since “40 to 45 percent of body heat” is lost from the head.

Rachel Vreeman and Aaron Carroll, at the centre for health policy at Indiana University in Indianapolis, rubbish the claim in the British Medical Journal. If this were true, they say, humans would be just as cold if they went without a hat as if they went without trousers. “Patently, this is just not the case,” they write.

The myth is thought to have arisen through a flawed interpretation of a vaguely scientific experiment by the US military in the 1950s. In those studies, volunteers were dressed in Arctic survival suits and exposed to bitterly cold conditions. Because it was the only part of their bodies left uncovered, most of their heat was lost through their heads.

The face, head and chest are more sensitive to changes in temperature than the rest of the body, making it feel as if covering them up does more to prevent heat loss. In fact, covering one part of the body has as much effect as covering any other. If the experiment had been performed with people wearing only swimming trunks, they would have lost no more than 10% of their body heat through their heads, the scientists add.”

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Now that you’ve learned why the common “you lose most of your body heat from your head” claim is a myth – Does this mean we shouldn’t wear knit hats to keep us warm? Or, in this case, to help us keep body heat in as an aid to help us improve our warm ups. The answer is no! Wearing a knit hat or putting your hood up will still help you warm up faster and more effectively, by giving your body one less place to release body heat. Basically, if your trying to stay warm or get warmer – The more parts of your body you’ve got covered, the better!

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In the winter time, I prefer to wear a skull cap while warming up. During the spring and fall seasons, I like to just pull my sweatshirt hood up over my head. In the summertime, the outdoor heat takes care of everything. So, there’s no need for any additional clothing.

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FINAL THOUGHTS

Remember, as with most things in life -SIMPLE IS BEST!

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I know these three methods are all so easy and kind of obvious. But, the fact is, I don’t see many Fitness Professionals using them or recommending them to their clients. It’s almost as if these methods are so simple and easy, we’ve forgotten about them or simply just ignore them. I’ll say it again – Simple is best! Don’t sweat the small stuff! (No, pun intended)

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Next time you warm up : take those shoes off and put more clothes on. Your Warm Up will be more effective and efficient because of it!

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If you’ve got any great Dynamic Warm-Up tips of your own – Please comment below and tell us about it!