Get the Most Out Of Your Upper Body Workout With This Warm-Up

Un uomo si allena con la fascia elastica foodspring

A good warm-up before your upper body workout is a must; going straight into a bench press without warming up your joints and muscles can lead to injury. Warming up also boosts your heart rate and improves blood flow to your muscles. Plus it prepares your joints for the stress of the workout and makes it possible for you to train with more movement. And your mental focus is also important; you consciously prepare yourself for working out so you can give your best performance.

Related: If today is a leg day, these 5 mobility exercises will prepare you for your workout.

Make sure you warm up your muscles and mobilize your joints, but don’t overload your body. After all, you want to have enough strength left for your actual workout. A lightweight resistance band is a good tool to use for your warm-up. It takes up very little space in your gym bag and is a 360-degree tool that stretches in all directions. Unlike warming up with a barbell, where the range of motion is limited and forces act downward, a resistance band is ideal for training shoulder mobility. Your shoulders are your body’s most mobile joints and the least stable, making them very susceptible to injury. You can use the resistance band to go through all your shoulder joint’s movement patterns once without putting it under any strain, plus you can warm up your back and shoulder muscles along the way.

The Warm-Up:

Get your cardiovascular system going and warm up for 5 minutes with a rowing machine or SkiErg. This uses your arms, back and abdominal muscles, so these cardio machines are great for preparing for an upper body workout. Alternatively, you can do a few jumping jacks and then round and extend your back on all fours. Then move on to mobility exercises with the resistance band; do 1 to 2 sets per exercise.

Arm Circles15
Rear Shoulder Pull15
Rotator Cuff External Rotation15
External Rotation at 90 Degrees Abduction12 each side
Lizard with Rotation12 each side

The Exercises

#1 Arm Circles

Stand with your arms shoulder-width apart. Hold the resistance band with both hands a little further than shoulder width from each other. The band should be slightly tense and your arms straight. Bring both arms up in front of you, over your head, and down behind you. Then reverse direction and bring your arms back over your head and down in front of you. That’s one repetition.

Muscles/joints: Shoulders.

Remember: Use your entire range of motion and make the circles as large as possible.

#2 Rear Shoulder Pull

Stand upright and hold the resistance band with both hands, with the tops of your hands facing forwards. Raise your arms in front of you and keep them level with your chest and parallel to the floor. Pull the band apart with your arms extended, squeezing your shoulder blades together. Briefly hold the tension and return to the center in a controlled manner. That’s one repetition.

Muscles/joints: Posterior shoulder muscles and upper trapezius.

Remember: Keep your arms extended and wrists straight.

#3 Rotator Cuff External Rotation

Stand upright in a stable stance, holding the resistance band with both palms facing upwards. Your elbows should be bent at a right angle and tucked into your body. Pull the band apart and outward, rotating your forearms outward. Return your forearms to the center in a controlled manner for one complete repetition.

Muscles/joints: Shoulder joint, shoulder rotator cuff.

 Remember: Tuck your elbows in close to your body and keep them at right angles the entire time.

#4 External Rotation at 90 Degrees Abduction

Stand upright with your feet shoulder-width apart, holding your resistance band with the tops of both hands facing forwards. Raise your right arm sideways to shoulder height and bend your elbow so that it forms a right angle and your right forearm is parallel to the floor. Your left arm should be at about chest height. Rotate your right forearm upward against the resistance from the band. In the full rotation, your forearm will be vertical. Return to the starting position in a controlled manner. That’s one repetition. Complete all repetitions using your right arm and then switch sides.

 Muscles/joints: Shoulder joint, shoulder rotator cuff.

 Remember: Keep your elbow at a right angle and your wrist straight the entire time.

#5 Lizard with Rotation

Assume a plank position on the floor with your palms under your shoulders and your body tensed straight. Take a big step forward with your right leg. Release your right palm from the floor and move your right forearm inward slightly, next to your right foot. Then extend your right arm outward and up until your arms form a straight line. Your gaze should follow your hand. Hold the position for a moment and return to the starting position. That’s one repetition. Complete all repetitions on the right side and then switch to the opposite leg and arm.

Muscles/joints: Spine and all core muscles.

Remember: To make the exercise easier, rest your back knee on the floor.

 Finished? Good job! Now there’s nothing standing in the way of your workout. Don’t forget to take a few minutes for a cool-down afterward to get your recovery off to a good start. Learn how to warm up properly here.

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Sources for this article

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