Many hockey players disrespect the act of warming up. In fact, in many circles, warming up is considered a weakness — and not a strategy. Luckily, we know otherwise. Discover some of the best ways to warm up before a big game.
A lot of coaches and trainers don’t believe in static warmups anymore. They feel that players should spend their valuable pre-game time warming up in the most dynamic ways possible. While dynamic warmups are proven to be more effective over time, static warmups shouldn’t be discarded altogether.
Luckily, there are dozens of dynamic warmups to help facilitate a hockey game before and after the match. As a double bonus, most of these warmups are easy and don’t require much preparation. For example, simple jumping jacks are a great way to warm up muscles and get the blood pumping.
Try yoga-inspired stretches to activate as many muscle groups as possible. Downward-facing dog is a great example that activates the muscle groups in the arms, legs, wrists and hands.
Hockey players need to warm up their legs and arms equally. One of the biggest mistakes in hockey is preparing by warming up the leg muscles — and forgetting about arms. Before putting on your hockey gear, try doing a few high kicks to warm up the upper thighs and the glutes.
When doing jumping jacks, remember to splay out fingers and toes to avoid cramping in smaller muscle groups during the game.
Pre-game warmups not only prepare your body, they also prepare your mind. Imagine hitting the ice before preparing for a game mentally. It’s hard to do. The ritual of preparing for the game, focusing your mind on your body, and getting in tune with your muscles can prepare your mind far better than anything else ever could.
You may never prevent an injury during a hockey game, but you can definitely reduce the odds of one. All of these warmups are designed to ensure you’ll be as safe as possible — both on and off the ice.
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