How much should I warm up before stretching?

by Anonymous
(No location given)

Hi! I was wondering how much I should warm up before stretching. Sometimes I just do jumping jacks or squats for around 3 minutes but I rarely feel like I am actually warm enough to go into deep stretches..I always stretch well after my workouts but sometimes I need to stretch while I'm just at home and can't do a full out work out...Do you have any thorough but quick warm up suggestions?

Comments for How much should I warm up before stretching?

Click here to add your own comments

Jan 02, 2013
Maria's reply
by: Maria

Hi there!

I have 'good news' and 'not so good news' for you... ;--)

The 'not so good news' are that there's no way to properly warm up quickly, just like there's not a 'get rich quick and easy' method...

A correct and deep 'warm up' requires time and a progressive cardiovascular activation of for at least twenty minutes. The longer that activation, the better it is for stretching.

But the good news is that there are different ways of stretching. You can also stretch without warming up as if it was part of the warming up process. In this case, you have to be a lot gentler, combine the stretching with deep breathings and proceed in the same progressive way, without forcing your muscles.

Stretching without another type of prior warm up should be executed with a relaxing intention. It will give you a great release feeling and will warm you up until a certain point. If you want to do it at home without doing a complete workout, just do it. That's somehow what the modern hatha yoga practitioners do.

But if your goal is to deeply enhance your flexibility, go for the bad news...: at least twenty minutes of anything that activates your heart (or more if you can): jogging, jumping, repeating soft and easy choreographies, or whatever.

Greetings,

Maria

Click here to add your own comments

Join in and write your own page! It's easy to do. How? Simply click here to return to Dance Questions About Technique.

The handy e-book of CONTEMPORARY DANCE HISTORY:

The Dance Thinker is our occasional E-zine. Fill in the form below to receive it for free and join us.

Enter Your E-mail Address
Enter Your First Name (optional)
Then

Don't worry — your e-mail address is totally secure.
I promise to use it only to send you The Dance Thinker.

The Dance Thinker
BACK ISSUES


Post contemporary dance announcements (workshops, auditions, performances, meetings and important news... it is free.)