Body Temperature and Performance4/19/18
Everyone has heard about the importance of warming up before a workout. If you are a seasoned veteran in the gym, this is no mystery to you. Stretching also plays a role as well, but a good solid warm up before running or even lifting weights goes a long way for numerous reasons. So, if you are one of those people who just simply stretches, or someone that warms up and does not know why, please read on.
Body temperature is a key component to performance level in any activity the human body participates in. From a preventative standpoint when it comes to injury, warming the body up helps out with nerve conduction, which involves fluid movement. This is essential for preventing injury. Dynamic stretching has become much more popular in recent years because the importance of warming up has been noticed more so than just simply stretching. Dynamic stretching mimics movements that are performed in a particular sport or activity, stretching and warming the body up simultaneously.
Warming up the body and keeping it warm throughout a workout also makes the muscles more elastic and supple. You even notice the few people who do not take their hoodie off or are dressed in the gym like they are trapped in a arctic blast? It is not simply to sweat more, but they want to keep the muscles warm which allows them to perform the movements with more easy, better performance, and less risk of being injured.
Some studies have shown that warming up for at the very least 20 minutes before a workout and keeping the body warm throughout the workout can boost performance up to 70% in athletes. The body can reach up to anywhere to 104 degrees Fahrenheit during a hard workout. The body temperature rises because the energy from your muscles that is being expended is being lost as heat. So, when you work, you get hot. Warming up before a workout gets the body “in the mood” to work. So, in essence, a part of your workout should be your warmup. It may be a hard habit to break to keep yourself covered during a workout, but in the long run your muscles will work better and more efficient in the gym and therefore develop much better.