“I’m ready to go bro, let’s do this!”
“Yeah bro! Let’s hit the bench press and get yolked!”
Thankfully the fitness centre at the North Shore Winter Club is entirely free of bros, dudes and any form of the terrifying hybrid dudebro’s. Most people are in there for their health first and foremost, and they take their time to do things right.
The warmup is the most important ten or 15 minutes of your entire session. There’s no substitute for a proper warmup. Heading straight for the squat rack will not only result in potential longterm damage, at the very least neglecting your warmup will lead to stiffness and soreness following your workout, which will make it more difficult to return to the gym.
Most people settle into a warmup routine that suits them, but there are a few myths surrounding preparation that are an easy trap to fall into.
I sat down with Steph St. Laurent to get the dirt on all the horrible ways we’re warming up every time we hit the fitness centre.
Kelvin: Let’s start with dynamic stretching, what are some of the myths surrounding this type of warmup routine?
Steph: People’s perceptions of dynamic stretching is always different, people think dynamic stretching is running or ballistic stuff. That’s old school, the running and jumping. That’s only for professional athletes who are closely monitored should be doing that stuff, they’re prepared for it every day. That’s probably the strongest myth, a proper dynamic warmup means you’re stretching within movement. Static stretches are done for longer duration at the end of the workout.
Riding the bike, what are the myths there?
People think riding the bike is sufficient, but it’s actually one of the most insufficient warmups.
Hold on though, it’s a precursor to your dynamic movement prep, there’s still a use for it. Before my workout today I did ten minutes on the bike to get my blood flow up and my circulatory system operating. So when I did my dynamic warmup I got more bang for my buck. If you sit for your job, the worst possible workout for you is the bike, bench press and bicep curls. How many people do that workout, right? When you’re sitting at work and then sitting on the bike, you reinforce that shape and you’re not opening your body up properly.
Ok, last one, running on the treadmill.
The treadmill I would classify as a better warmup than riding the bike. You’ve got good positioning, you’re upright, your hips are opening up more. But if you have joint problems then the run wouldn’t be a good situation for you.
I went for a run in these shoes a couple years back and I broke my foot. I was walking around in Boston a couple days after and I could hardly move.
Footwear, dude! If you like running because it activates your circularity system you still need to do a dynamic warmup. Preparation for movement, you need to make sure your ligaments and tendons within your joint systems are properly warmed up and have full range of motion, only then will you have the recipe for a great workout.
If you need help with Steph’s dynamic warmup, just ask!