From the very beginning, you should determine that the warm-up before a run is just a smooth entry into the training pulse zone with the obligatory warm-up of muscles, ligaments and joints. And the warm-up is a smooth exit from it, with a decrease in heart rate to a state of rest. It would seem that that’s all, we can put an end to it. But no.
Even experienced runners make some mistakes in the warm-up. And most amateurs ignore the warm-up. And not just in running, but in any sport.
So, the first thing to remember is that we warm up the whole body before running, not just the legs. This includes the hands, neck and shoulder girdle. A few classic joint rotations in different directions should be included in the warm-up to supply the joints with blood and oxygen (and therefore lubrication).
The second is that stretching is not at all synonymous with warming up. Stretching is a separate exercise, most often aimed at relaxation and relaxation of muscles, or at maintaining or increasing flexibility. But only when the muscles are warmed up.
Getting out of bed in the morning and starting to stretch before running is wrong. Cold muscles should not be stretched. Only a warm-up is necessary to gently warm up the tissues and prepare the cardiovascular system, which is done just before the run itself.
Thirdly, stretching is not the same as stretching. In sports it is accepted to divide it into static and dynamic. From the names it is clear that static stretching (“statics”) implies being in a stretched position for some time, about 5-20 seconds or more. And the dynamic (“dynamic”) does not involve holding the stretched muscles.
Finally, fourth, do I stretch at all before training? Some amateur runners find it hard to get rid of the stereotype that stretching is necessary before a running workout. And on cold muscles.
Moreover, many of them do static stretching, but it is aimed at relaxing the muscles. If it is to be used, then only after the muscles have done the main work, i.e. after the workout.
At the same time, several recent studies have shown that “static” worsens neuromuscular control and slightly affects muscle power for the worse. That is, contrary to the long-standing and quite logical belief that classical static stretching protects against injuries and helps the muscle to work more productively, we see almost the opposite picture.
Despite the fact that it happens only at the initial stage of training or competition, a good reason to abandon static stretching before running is outlined quite clearly for athletes. In fact, even the old Soviet running schools and textbooks taught to do only dynamic stretching before training after warming up the muscles with light aerobic exercises and jogging.
A warm-up is important after an intense workout, for a smooth decrease in heart rate to a resting state. Accordingly, it may be a light jogging, which is smoothly transitioned into walking. The warm-up may already include elements of static stretching. Contrary to misconceptions, stretching after running only partly helps to get rid of painful sensations in the next days, and even does not give such an effect. However, post-workout stretching is recommended by most experts.
The best options for warming up before a run are classic rotations, followed by a very light warm-up aerobic jog, which can be followed by elements of light dynamic stretching and light twists, squats and jumps.