Since so many people participate in physical exercise, it is essential to discuss the importance of warming up before any strenuous activity. Many have repeatedly ignored the pre-workout warm-up phase, not knowing the consequences of doing so.
Many changes occur in the body once you start physical activity. Respiration rate, blood flow, oxygen levels, and nutrients being delivered to cells increase. The rate of increase should be regulated at a steady pace to prepare the body for the physical stress that exercise requires. If one abandons this preliminary procedure, the body will work less efficiently and the exercise will lead to lower quality results. Heating prepares the nervous system, increases mental awareness, and relaxes joints and muscles to avoid injury. Warm-ups start the flow of fluid in the joints, which reduces the risk of muscle wear. It gives the heart a good time to adapt and pump blood and nutrients to the muscles.
This is vital for the elderly, because they have less soft tissues; They have less streamlined joints and weaker hearts. Sudden exercise and without warming up can lead to cardiac arrests in the elderly.
How does a person warm up correctly?
At first, it can be done with any procedure that enables the heart to beat faster. One can simply walk and jog, or if cardiovascular equipment is available, such as a rowing machine or bike, it can be used. Start at a gentle pace, then slowly increase the speed until the heart rate rises and the body temperature rises. It is important to note that the pace should be in accordance with the individual's current fitness level, as the activity will leave the person energetic rather than exhausted.
After doing light sweating (suggested time is 3-5 minutes, longer if one is training in a cold environment) one should do dynamic stretches. Stretching helps develop general flexibility, especially in the areas of the spine, shoulder and hip. The type of stretching depends on the type of activity the person plans to engage in. For example, if one is about to exercise, the recommended type of stretching is one that simulates the movements that will be done on the court or field. If one is about to practice martial arts, light sparring can be done at a quarter of the normal speed, or just do the movements in slow motion. Make sure to stretch the major muscle groups for at least 8 seconds. It is important to remember to keep the feet moving or do leg exercises as the upper body is stretched to prevent blood pooling in the legs. Remember, one should only stretch if the muscles are already warm. Do not bounce while stretching. It causes a contracture that can lead to muscle tearing or straining.
For weightlifters, this is what to do after the initial warm-up. Load the bar at about 50-60% of the heaviest weight to do for the session and perform the number of repetitions that will be done for the heavier sets. For the second group, the weight will increase to 80%, then eventually to 90%, and decrease to 2-3 times. Next, rest for about 30 seconds, then repeat the steps. After this warm-up, one can now proceed with heavy lifting for the day.
After warming up and moving on to the main exercise, it is also important to cool down. When a person suddenly stops exercising or lifting weights, blood pools in the muscles and oxygen is blocked. When this happens, a person is at risk of having a heart attack. So cooling should be just as important as warming up.
Exercise is good for health. Everyone is encouraged to pump, just remember to remember all the necessary precautions to not only maximize your workout, but also stay safe and healthy.