Warm Up with Dynamic Stretches

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Jonas Chiropractic Sports Injury Care


Dynamic stretching, also known as movement prep, involves movement of moderate intensity that does not exceed your normal range of motion, with a gradual increase in range and intensity. Dynamic stretching prepare the body for activity by helping to increase blood flow and muscle temperature.

We all know the importance of warming up before a race or a training run. Your pre-run warmup should be more than just getting cold muscles moving and warmed up, it should include movements that activate and elongate your muscles. A dynamic warmup preps your cardiovascular, neuromuscular and muscular systems, which will help increase performance and prevent injury. A dynamic warmup is composed of easy exercises like squats, monster walks and hip extensions, where you actively turn on muscles for the activity you’re about to do.

This type of warm-up promotes blood flow and enhances joint and muscle range of motion—optimally cushioning joints and muscles for the ensuing strenuous activity.

Dynamic vs. Static Stretching

Don’t substitute static stretches for a dynamic warm-up. The purpose of warming up is to prepare your muscles by increasing your muscles core temperature. Static stretching results in your muscles’ core temperature dropping. Although your muscles may be stretched and feel loose, they will actually be less elastic and not as powerful. Do static stretches after your workout or race to help your muscles cool down and gradually lower your heart rate. Static stretching after exercise when your muscles are still warm will help maintain long-term flexibility.

Dynamic Stretches for Runners

Some good warm up stretches are the Leg Swings, Forward Lunges, Side Lunges, and the Frankenstein Walk.

  • Leg Swings – hold onto something stable and swing one leg out in front and back behind you without bending your knee. This helps with flexibility in your hamstring and hip flexors. You can also do these side to side.

  • Forward Lunge – take a giant step forward and bring your hips down so your back knee almost touches the ground. Come up and take another giant step with the other foot, and keep going.

  • Side Lunge – take a giant step to the side, bring your feet together, repeat.

  • Frankenstein Walk – hold your arms out straight in front. Bring your straight leg up to your fingertips, walk forward and bring the opposite leg up to your outstretched arms.

For more dynamic stretches you can download a guide to 5 dynamic stretches at www.chirocoldspring.com/downloads/5-Dynamic-Stretches-to-Warm-Up.pdf.

Performing dynamic stretches instead of just a slow jog to warm up give you better performance in training and races, and help prevent injuries. You can also increase your performance and prevent injury with Active Release Technique®.  ART® combines intense active movement-based massage and joint mobilization techniques, which sets it apart from passive massage and physical therapy. At Jonas Chiropractic Sports Injury Care you receive a personal treatment plan geared to your training or recovery goals. We begin by understanding what you do, as they relate to your sport or daily activity, and evaluate your posture to ensure equal and correct balance, and create a plan with a goal. We are dedicated to keeping up with the most effective procedures that provide significant positive results. These can include stretching, strengthening, manipulation, cardiovascular exercise, and other modalities to thoroughly cover all the bases. Our multidisciplinary approach leaves no stone unturned. Our approach is as unique as you are.

We are certified in Active Release Technique, Graston Technique, Chiropractic Biomechanics. We treat swimmers, basketball players, soccer players, tennis players, runners and triathletes. We keep athletes doing what they like to do!

Dr. Jon DeGorter is part of the Jonas Chiropractic Sports Injury Care team. Dr. Jon specializes in treating runners and triathletes. He is well versed in injury prevention and rehabilitation — keeping athletes doing what they love to do.

By Dr. Jon DeGorter, DC