To warm up or not to warm up?

Have you ever ran a few miles or played a sport and realized halfway through mile 2 or in golf, hole #3 before you get into a groove?

If you struggle to get started, you probably skip a proper warm up and instead spend the first 10-15 min of your sport or activity trying to get your body and mind ready to perform.

Last weekend I volunteered at the 2021 Lake Aurora Bob Miller Classic Golf Scramble. It was a beautiful day to get out on the green and tee it up!

Okay.. my husband did not approve of that joke. But he did approve of the warm up and mobility routine that I created for him a week or two prior to his scramble and I thought I should share it with you!

You see, a proper warm-up routine should be performed prior to activity to prepare the body for the demands of a workout. Dynamic movements are the best way to prepare your body for the sport you are about to play.

Some principles you want to look for when picking a new warm up routine include:

  • Will this activity increase my core temperature and muscle flexibility?
  • What about the heart rate and respiratory rate?
  • Does my warm up actually use the muscles my sport/activity uses?
  • Does my mind feel “game ready” once I am finished?

Here is a dynamic warm up specifically geared towards upper extremity sports and golfers.

  1. Small Arm Circles: fwd/bwd
    • Make slow, small circles with the arm positioned out from your side
      near shoulder height (palm down or thumb up).
      30 seconds each direction
  2. Over Head  Squat
    • Begin by getting into a squat position with toes pointed outward  and legs hip width apart while arms are in an overhead position holding a club or a stick.  Next, bend your knees as you perform a squat, at the same time keep your arms in the overhead position and your chest facing forward not down.  Then return to starting position. 
      Perform 8 repetitions
  3. Trunk twist 
    • Hold a club or a stick with hands shoulder width apart. Rotate the body to the left, turning the head and pivoting on the opposite foot as if doing a backswing. Repeat on other side.
      Perform 5-10 repetitions each side
  4. Squat with pivot
    • Hold a club or stick at shoulder level. Keep weight in heels, hold abs tight and squat down pushing hips back, do not bend at waist.
      Go as low as you can while keeping form and as you push back up rotate to the right squeezing the left glute as you do. Repeat and pivot to the left side, squeezing the right glute. DO NOT TWIST BACK, pivot/rotate on feet instead
      Perform 5-8 repetitions each side
  5. Walking hamstring stretch
    • Take a step forward with the right foot with your knee straight. Reach down towards your your heel with both hands keeping your right knee straight. Allow your left knee to bend. Return to the starting position using a sweeping motion with your hands. Take a step forward with the left and repeat.
      Perform 5-10 repetitions each side


If your warm up meets this criteria, you will be able to step onto the field game ready while the rest of your competition is still trying to wake up and get going. That’s right, while John Smith is still finishing his donut and coffee you will be setting new PR’s.

Don’t believe me? Try it out for yourself!

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