Getting Warm and Staying Warm at Competition

Getting Warm and Staying Warm at Competition

Learn the tips and tricks to getting warm and staying warm on competition weekends!

Learn the tips and tricks to getting warm and staying warm on competition weekends!

Getting Warm

1. Get your heart rate up! 
If you're not really warm on the inside, you've got to meet this threshold as a minimum.  Raising your pulse rate means more blood in circulation, getting more oxygen and other goodies to your muscles.  So, you’ll also start breathing more.

2. Sweat! 
You know you've actually started to get warm when you've started to sweat!  Get that temperature up from your toes to your nose and know you've probably reached a good starting point when you break a sweat.

3. Give yourself time 
Sometimes it only takes five minutes, but however long it takes you to get your pulse up, breathe more rapidly, and break a sweat, is how long you need to leave for yourself to get ready for bigger and more demanding movement.

 4. Figure out your routine 
Try different exercises until you've got a lineup that gets every part of your body hot!

Staying Warm

1. Wrap up 
Put on the baggy warm ups when you need to retain heat.  Air is actually a really good insulator when it is still and not blowing around, so wear clothing that traps the hot air near your body and doesn't let chilly breezes in.

2. Keep moving 
If your wait is not too long, keep moving to prevent your body parts from getting cold and stiff.  You don't have to stay on your feet for this, but you'll want to keep all of your joints in motion and not give certain ones preference.  When you're already warm is a good time to do dynamic stretching.

3. Do it all over again 
It takes a whopping three hours, give or take, for your body to completely cool off.  Don't let it get there! Give yourself enough time to go through your complete warm up routine again, and don't settle for less.  Make sure your friends do it too!

Warm Up Moves You Can Try

It is extremely important that you engage your abdominal muscles while doing these exercises.  Contract your lower belly so much that you feel you could pull it to your spine, and keep it that way the whole time!

X and O 
Lay on your back making a big X with your arms and legs reaching out on the floor.  Start to arch your whole body to one side until you can't curve any more and still keep your whole back on the floor.  Then use your abdominals to continue the bend onto your side, curling up into a little ball like an O.  Reverse the movement back out to an X with your back on the floor. Alternate sides and repeat for a total of 5 on each side.

Alternating Side Planks 
Go down to your hands and knees and make sure your hands are right under your shoulders.  Walk your feet back so you are in full center plank position.  Open one arm to the side and rotate your whole body as one piece, opening into side plank with that same arm up to the ceiling and your body maintaining a straight line.  Slowly rotate back to center plank, gently setting your hand back on the ground. Alternate sides and repeat for a total of 5 on each side.

Burpees (modified) 
From a standing position, feet parallel, bend your knees and bring your hands to the floor in front of you, shoulder width apart.  Put your weight on your hands and jump both of your feet at the same time behind you to make a center plank position.  Jump both your feet back to the starting position behind your hands. Stand up. Repeat 10 times.

Stand with your feet parallel and step one foot back into a moderate lunge. In one smooth movement, press off the back leg and bring your body into a "T" position over the standing leg so the upper body and push off leg make a straight line parallel to the floor.  Gently shift your weight back into the lunge putting the foot back on the floor.  Repeat 5 times on each foot.

Leigh Schanfein of Dance Informa.