The Two-Minute Cardio Warm Up

Posted On May 26, 2016 By Tom Holland

The Two-Minute Cardio Warm Up

Professional athletes warm up for a reason and you should too! Research has shown that warming up before exercise can help performance as well as decrease the chance of injury. This holds true for both resistance training as well as cardiovascular exercise. The key is to engage in low-level dynamic movements, gradually increasing the blood flow to the muscles you will be using, as well as increasing your core body temperature.

These movements should be relatively simple and the warm up doesn't need to be long to be effective. Whether you are playing a recreational sport like tennis or basketball, or getting ready to lift weights, spending just a few minutes getting your body ready through a simple warm up routine is a smart idea.

Not sure what to do? Here is an example:

This warm up routine includes four different low-level dynamic movements each done for 30 seconds:

  1. Running in place
  2. Jumping Jacks
  3. Skaters
  4. High Knees

Do this cardio warm up right before your exercise routine or activity to be ready to go!


Video Transcription

The Two-Minute Cardio Warm Up

Hi, I'm Tom Holland, Bowflex Fitness Adviser.

This is the two minute cardio warm up.

We keep hearing that we need to warm up before exercise, before our strength training, before our activity, our sports, but we don't know what to do. So here are four different movements, we're gonna do them for 30 seconds to get the body warmed up before we work out. OK?

We're gonna start with running in place.

3... 2... 1... and begin.

So 30 seconds. What we're gonna do is progressively get the blood flowing, warming the body up to a low level aerobic activity, progressively getting a little bit more intense. So 30 seconds of this and then we're going to go into jumping jacks. Then we'll do skaters and finish up with some high knees. Alright?

10 more seconds you guys. And again you'll see they're going nice and easy. Ryan and Lisa are not going crazy. We're getting warmed up. Nice and easy.

5... 4... 3... 2... jumping jacks.

So now we're bringing the upper body into it, before was pretty much just legs. Right? Now a little bit more movement, little bit more blood flow. Nice and easy though.

Before strength training, before you play tennis anything like that, you want to get the body warmed up. A lot of injuries happen because we're not warmed up.

Okay? Ten more seconds you guys.

Third movement a little bit more advanced - skaters. We're gonna add lateral movement in.

This is really important.

And go, ready and begin. Skaters, you got it.

So now we're adding a lateral movement in. The lateral is really important again for sports like tennis, soccer, anything like that where we're asking our body to do those kind of motions, we want this type of warmup.

15 more seconds. We're gonna take it up one final time.

Thirty seconds of high knees. Alright.

So, progressive, getting the blood flow to our working muscles, just two minutes will make a world of difference.

Ready and high knees. Final 30 seconds.

So now they're really pumping the arms, bringing those legs up. We went from running in place to this; full body.

Twenty more seconds you guys.

The blood is now circulating in the body, their muscles are warming up. This is much more effective than static stretching.

So I don't care how old you are, what you're doing, whether it's strength training, tennis, soccer, golf. Get the body warmed up. Just two minutes.

5... 4... 3... 2... good.

There you have it - two minute cardio warm up.

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How about some push-ups after your cardio warm up:

Push-Up Workout Guide: The Best Push-Up Exercises

A fit woman performing a push up.