Why do we need to warm up before practice/games?
Before any exercise session it is important to warm up. A warm-up prepares us mentally as well as physically for the work we will be doing, and becomes particularly important when we perform more intense exercise sessions.
A proper warm-up should involve light aerobic work which puts your major joints such as your shoulders, hips, knees and spine through their range of motion. If you are tempted to skip your warm-up and delve straight into the real workout - think twice! A warm-up is important because it:
1. Increase body temperature. Increasing your body temperature will reduce potential muscle injuries, as the muscle tendons and ligaments will be warmer and more pliable when contracting.
2. Increases blood flow to the muscles. The more blood reaching the muscles, the greater the supply of oxygen and glucose required for energy production.
3. Increases blood flow to the heart. The greater the supply of blood to the heart, the less potential difficulty there is for exercise-induced cardiac problems.
4. Improves contractibility of muscles. A warm muscle will be more elastic and supple, which helps it to be more mechanically efficient.
5. Prepares the cardiovascular system for the work to be done. A steady warm-up will give your heart, lungs and blood vessels time to meet the demands of your workout. Without it you can quickly experience shortness of breath, discomfort and fatigue, as your body struggles to meet the physiological demands placed upon it.
It is important to warm up and stretch and not stretch to warm up.
Dynamic stretching is the use of movement to stretch muscles before a workout or athletic competition. It relies on momentum to engage the muscles, rather than holding a stretch at a standstill. Dynamic stretching routines are usually customized for particular sports to mimic movements specific to each individual sport.
Here are a few examples:
Players can form two lines and perform these exercises covering a distance of 10-15yards.
Passing Warm Up
Organization & Set Up:
Team split into two groups.
Players in Group 1 have a ball and line up 5-7 yards behind a row of cones
Players in Group 2 line up and then take turns to run into each square, receive pass from player in group 1, control and return pass before back-peddling out of square and entering the next square. Repeat and then rotate groups.
Quality passing - Inside of foot and follow through to target.
Quality control/touch - inside of foot, out of your feet to set up return pass.
Good body position and set position to receive and pass quickly.
Adaption & Progression:
Play 1 touch
Vary height of pass in from group 1. Thrown with hands towards head, chest, thigh or foot
Increase tempo/speed of activity - add time limit for competition