Far too many athletes, coaches, and programs don’t take advantage of the learning opportunity gained during the warm-up process.
First of all, I call it a Prep-Period, not a warm-up. Not that it matters… but it kind of does.
It matters because athletes and coaches don’t give a “warm-up” the respect it deserves. They go through the motions- if they make any motions at all!
Many coaches stay in their office until the warm-up is completed, then they come out to start the “real” practice.
If you call it a prep period or something with a different meaning attached to it, you gain more value during that time.
Th prep period aims to create better habits, prepare the body for higher intensities, and improve potentially low functioning areas.
Just think about this concept. If you can gain better quality in movement and not expending high levels of energy, why would you not do this? It’s like receiving free money- take it!
The key is to have a plan of improvement every day!
Get better at a skill. I always refer back to my 7-Movement Patterns, 180-Series, and Roll and Reach Series. These patterns and Series accomplish so many things that build skill acquisition, body prep, and mental preparedness.
Create an outline of the skills that are crucial for you athletes to perform well. Find a way to get them into the warm-up. By getting them into the warm-up every day, you increase the number of reps day after day. This leads to faster motor programming and highly proficient skill execution.
It is vital to add, change, and increase and decrease the warm-up variables every 4-6weeks. Adapting the warm-up allows the athletes to continue to learn new warm-ups, stay focused on the skill, and understand this is a time for getting better at a skill.
Stop wasting your warm-ups, get a game-plan together, and value the prep time.
If you are bored with your “warm-ups,” I am sure your athletes are too!