Preparing your body properly for training and competition is important to ensure you perform to your potential and to reduce the risk of injuries. But it’s also a valuable time to work on new aspects of training or maintain other fitness qualities if time is limited for your training.
Now whilst getting on the treadmill, bike or rower for 10 minutes will no doubt serve the purpose of warming you up, you can make much better use of that time at the start of each session to improve fundamental areas of your fitness.
The Movement Preparation sequence we use is built on the RAMP framework –
Raise body temperature & heart rate Activate key muscle groups Mobilise joints Potentiate – prime the body for the maximal intensities it will be required to produce in the session/comp
The RAMP framework for me is great because it allows me to make the most out of the 10-15 minutes at the start of a session. Now 10-15 minutes doesn’t sound like a lot of time but when you do this every session, every week it accumulates to a lot of training time.
The potentiation phase also provides a nice little window of opportunity to have the athlete doing some power & speed work in a strength phase or a bit of strength work in a power phase; or with younger athletes there some time available to develop technique for the Olympic Lifts.
The combinations you can use are endless and can be tailored to the athletes individual needs and goals of the specific training phase.
This movement preparation protocol is something I learnt from Ed Archer during my time working for him at the Athlete Academy. It was a system we used at the start of every training session with groups and individuals that has proven to be very effective for a number of reasons.
When starting out with a new client/athlete/team this is usually the first thing I will do with them as it provides me with a lot of info and I can start to make decisions about what is an appropriate starting point for them. It serves as a good screening process as immediately it gives you an idea of their capabilities in terms of co-ordination, flexibility, stability & strength.
From a coach’s perspective it ticks quite a lot of boxes the sequence contains movements through all three planes: sagittal, frontal & transverse so it’s providing a more varied stimulus than just getting people running/rowing/cycling at the start of a session. Our sports use movements in all three planes so let’s get the body moving through all of them from the start. It’s also providing a training stimulus for improving co-ordination, core strength, shoulder stability and single leg work.
The basic movement preparation sequence requires no equipment and once you’ve got it down you’ll be through it in as little as 6 minutes. One thing I must emphasize is that although this can be done in 6 minutes, don’t rush it & always aim for technical perfection and then progress the speed you execute it. Quality movement is the priority.
So here we go:
1) Hip Rolls x 10 Each Side
2) Knee Pull to Glute Bridge x 10
3) Mini-Lunge / Spiderman x 10 Each Side
4) Prisoner Squats x 10
5) Press Up to Full Lunge/Spiderman x 10 (1 rep = 1 press up & 1 lunge on each side)
6) Power Position to Full Extension x 10
7) Forward Lunge x 10 Each Side
8) Side Lunge x 10 Each Side
9) One Leg Running Man x 10 Each Side
So those exercises cover the RAM of the RAMP – The ‘P’ I’ll take care of in another series of articles as depending on the training goal and the level of the athlete this will vary.
Give it a go, and leave me a comment to let me know what you think.