Use this 5 exercise warm-up to start your workout, or as a great way to start your day:
1. HALF-KNEEL ANKLE MOBILITY:
This exercise targets movement of your ankle joint. Keep your low back flat and core engaged. Imagine squishing a bug under the inside arch of your foot as you lean into the wall. Shoot for 1-3 sets of 8-15 repetitions.
2. IR/ER HIP STRETCH:
This hip mobility drill targets both hip internal and external rotation. This is key for the posterior hip muscles. It's also important for the health of the actual hip joint. Keep your pelvis in neutral and your low back flat. Press the ground away from you with your hands as you hold the stretch. Shoot for 1-3 sets of 45 seconds each side.
3. THORACIC SPINE PRAYER:
The primary target of this exercise is to open up some movement of the upper back (thoracic spine). Press the ground away through the support side forearm. Follow your bent elbow with your eyes as you open up. Shoot for 1-3 sets of 8-15 repetitions each side.
4. LONG-STEP WITH T-SPINE ROTATION:
This facilitates movement through the hips, core, low back, upper back and chest. Keep your back knee planted on the ground and take a comfortably long step with the other leg. Push the ground away with your hand opposite your front leg. Follow your palm with your eyes as you open up your arm/chest to the sky. Shoot for 1-3 sets of 8-15 repetitions on each side.
5. HEEL TAPS WITH WALL PRESS:
This is a killer core exercise that targets some of the small core muscles of pelvic floor. It's an important exercise to train yourself out of falling into anterior pelvic tilt. Press gently into the wall behind you and imagine pinning a piece of paper to the floor with your low back. Maintain these cues as you slowly tap your heels to the ground one at a time. Shoot for 1-3 sets of 10-20 total heel taps.
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Tim DiFrancesco, PT, DPT, ATC, CSCS spent 6 seasons as the Head Strength & Conditioning Coach of the Los Angeles Lakers and is the founder of TD Athletes Edge. He is nationally renowned for his evidence-based and scientific approach to fitness, training, nutrition, and recovery for athletes and fitness enthusiasts.
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