The Master Upper Body Warm Up Template
Following the last post about the lower body template is this week's upper body warm up template. If you missed the last post, check it out HERE to learn how and why to warm up properly before lower body training days.
For this week...
Here is a similar template to program an effective upper body warm up for ANY training goal and how to get it done in just 10 minutes.
Step 1: 0:00-3:00
I like to just generally get moving a little before training to get the heart rate elevated, body temperature up, and blood flow increased. A simple 3 minute cardio circuit moving in more than one plane will get it going.
Try this: 30 seconds of each move x 2 rounds.
Step 2: 3:00-5:00
Full Body Mobility
Proper training in big ranges of motion should enable your body to have great mobility at all times. Sure, sometimes you may feel a little stiff but in the absence of any injuries or chronic muscle tightness (which should be dealt with separately, not attempted to be fixed in a warm up) a few basic mobility exercises should prepare the whole body for training.
Try one of these 2 exercises slowly and continuously for 2 minutes, taking big deep breaths the whole time.
Step 3: 5:00-7:00
Core and Upper Back Activation
We use our core in every single workout to stabilize the spine and pelvis, transmit force from lower to upper extremity, and as a strong platform while our extremities move and produce force. In addition, for upper body training I like to set the upper back up for success. The middle and lower trap are often ignored completely or undertrained so by front-loading the workout with some of this we sure up any gaps in training.
Try 2 sets of this super-set to supercharge your core pre-training.
-Bear Crawl x 30 seconds
-Band Pull Aparts x 25 reps
Step 4: 7:00-10:00
Depending on the workout the exact exercises will change. I try to match this with the main lift of the day but any jump, throw, swing, sprint, etc will do.
On push day try...
-3 x 6 of Incline Plyo Pushups
Power pulling exercises aren't quite as easy to come up with but I like to hit a full body power movement that is heavy in the posterior chain. Here are two of my favorites.
There you have it folks, a great format to warm up for lower body and upper body training days quickly and efficiently.
If you happen to be doing full body training, you can combine these two templates to make for a comprehensive full body warm up by super setting upper and lower body mobility drills, hitting core and upper back, then a short superset of an upper and lower (or full) body power movement.