Category Archives: Warm-up

Dynamic Warm-ups in the Physical Therapy Setting

arm bike 300x300 Dynamic Warm ups in the Physical Therapy SettingHey Sally, how are you doing today?  How about you spend 15 minutes warming up on the bike / elliptical / treadmill / arm bike and I’ll be right with you.

How many times do you hear this at a traditional physical therapy clinic?   In the strength and conditioning realm, using a warm-up like this is absolute heresy.  For some reason it still persists in the world of physical therapy though.

I’ve got to be honest, I’ll use the stationary bike and cardio equipment if I feel it’s really needed for my patients (cardio for chronic pain or nerve gliding effects – stationary bike for improving knee flexion in total knees).  However, I feel a pang on guilt giving this to other patients who could really benefit from a well done dynamic warm-up.   Continue reading

Warming up and Perfecting the Clean and Jerk

Some time ago I made a video which showed my favorite videos for warming up and practicing the snatch.  This week I’ve compiled a video of my favorite warm-up and technical drills for the Clean and Jerk.  I do this sequence before doing any clean and jerk work and it really helps get you prepared for the workout.  These drills are also excellent to work on the finer points of the lift as well.  Check it out:

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My Favorite Mobility and Warm-up Exercises for the Entire Body

stretch My Favorite Mobility and Warm up Exercises for the Entire BodyWhen I was at the power monkey camp in Tennessee I put the athletes through a warm-up that everyone really enjoyed and several people asked if I had in a video format.  Over this past weekend I got in front of a video camera to make that happen.  I slung together a whole heck of a lot of my favorite mobility exercises for the entire body and plugged it into one big old video.  The exercises selected are based off on the Joint by Joint concept popularized by Gray Cook .  Check it out and let me know what you think. Continue reading

The Perfect Warm-up for the Snatch

The snatch is easily one of the most challenging exercises I can think of.  It’s certainly one of my weakest exercises and over time I’ve learned to really appreciate the lift.  I’ve had several trials and tribulations with the lift over the years.

From ugly turkey snatches in the grass…

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How to Properly Warmup for the Kipping Pullup

kip pu How to Properly Warmup for the Kipping PullupSince I’m on a tremendous kipping pullup spree lately I figured I’d just keep it going.  Over the years I’ve compiled several corrective exercises (Some mobility drills, some stability drills and some for motor control) that I like to use to improve the kipping pullup.  I’ve taken the ones I found most valuable and thrown them into a warmup that’s easy to do, concise and requires very little equipment.  These are the same drills I used at Crossfit Tribe when I was coaching there.  Hopefully this video will help some people struggling with the kipping pullup and give some coaches a couple ideas to throw into their warmup prior to a big workout with pullups. Continue reading

Super Bretzel: If I could only pick one stretch, this would be it

brettzel Super Bretzel: If I could only pick one stretch, this would be itHere’s one of my favorite stretches.  I really like this stretch because it hits a lot of things at once and it focuses on areas that usually need it.  I basically combined a stretch created by Gray Cook and Brett Jones with some ingenuity from Kelly Starrett and Mike Boyle.  I’ll call it the Super Bretzel.

The bretzel was created by Gray Cook and Brett Jones.  Check out their video: Continue reading

The Burgener Olympic Lifting Warm-up for Shoulder Health

Mike Burgener The Burgener Olympic Lifting Warm up for Shoulder HealthI really like Coach Burgener.

If you haven’t heard of Coach Mike Burgener, he’s the Senior International Weightlifting Coach for the U.S.  Somewhere along the way he got involved with the crossfit community.  As you are all well aware of, crossfit loves the olympic lifts and uses them quite a bit in their programming.  It’s great that he’s lending his expertise for all of us to be better athletes because these lifts are complex and take time and effort to master.

He has an excellent warm-up he teaches that all crossfit athletes use before each session.  I was first introduced to the warm-up from Steve Liberati over at crossfit Tribe.  The main point is to improve technique in order to increase performance but I really believe we can get a lot more from the warm-up. Continue reading

Stretches and Mobility Drills to Prepare for the Snatch and Overhead Squat: Video Demonstrations

Dimas snatch 2 Stretches and Mobility Drills to Prepare for the Snatch and Overhead Squat: Video DemonstrationsAs we all know, the first time trying an overhead squat can be quite the experience.  It feels super awkward, its hard to put all of the pieces together and often times your body just does not feel like it can get into the right position.

NOTE: As of 10/16/2013 I’ve added a new video with mobility drills that I’m currently using.  Find the link to that article HERE:

Like all other exercises, mastering the overhead squat and snatch is going to require intense technical practice, probably more so then most other exercises.  The movements requires a ton of flexibility, stability and coordination to perform safely and efficiently.

One of the major limiting factors of someone’s ability to properly overhead squat is flexibility.  I decided to compile a video list and demonstration of my favorite stretches and mobility drills to increase flexibility for these lifts.  Continue reading

How to: Ultimate Upper Body Warm-Up – The How’s and Why’s Explained

oly lifting2 How to: Ultimate Upper Body Warm Up   The Hows and Whys ExplainedIf you read my training journal at all you know I throw around the words “prehab”, “static stretching” and “dynamic warmup” quite frequently.   A lot of people have asked me what the hell that means and really its tough to describe the exercises I use.   Here’s my best effort of an explanation:

  • The term prehab (prehabilitation) or preventative refers to exercises that help keep your joints and muscles healthy.
  • Static Stretching refers to holding stretches for extended periods of time.
  • A Dynamic Warmup consists of exercises that help prepare the body, joints and muscles for the upcoming workout.  The term dynamic just means that the exercises all require movement, as opposed to static stretching.

This part of your training session is pivotal to the health of your joints and your performance.  If you’re anything like me you want to get stronger and leave the gym with two shoulder joints that don’t feel like they’ve been ravaged by gorillas after doing an upper body training session. Continue reading

To Stretch or Not to Stretch: Evidence Based and Practical Solutions

flexibility grandma To Stretch or Not to Stretch: Evidence Based and Practical SolutionsWe’ve all heard this argument, should we stretch or not before training? I’ve heard all the rumors:

  • I heard that you need to stretch before training so you don’t get injured.
  • I’ve heard that stretching can make you weaker if you do it before lifting.
  • Dynamic Warmups are the new best thing to do before you workout.
  • Stretching should be done to “cooldown”
  • Stretching is dumb, I drink beaver milk everyday to get strong

Alright, I made the last one up, but the other ones are pretty common.  A new article just came out in the Scandinavian Journal of Medicine and Science in Sports.  Continue reading