"Both in exercise and in everyday life, your core is where all movement and power is generated," says Emily McLaughlin, in-house certified fitness trainer and nutrition expert at 8fit. When your body is properly warmed up, your muscles and joints are ready for maximum flexibility, which means you can perform each exercise with PROPER form (like deep barbell squats, for example) that maximize results and minimize the risk of injury. It not only gets your core muscles moving, but it boosts your ab burn, too. I used to skip the gym because I just didn’t like to lift. . Hold a light dumbbell at the chest if you wish, or reach both hands up overhead as you come up onto tiptoes for increased core recruitment and muscle activation. Statically held stretches are best done at the end of your workouts, as part of a cool-down, to help restore flexibility to tightened, shortened muscles. The bird dog is a simple but highly effective warm-up exercise that focuses on activating core musculature. High knees: 60 seconds. Anyone who's ever jumped into a workout without a proper warm-up has almost certainly regretted it. If doing this movement without weight is totally comfortable for you, in your strength routine start with light weight and overload progressively and gradually. How to: Begin in a standing position, with your feet wider than hip-width apart. Warm-up sessions are designed to gently prepare the body for a workout by gradually increasing blood circulation and the heart rate. Work with a Certified Strength and
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