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Warm Up Properly: The 15 Best Dynamic Warm Up Exercises & Routines To Prevent Injury

Today, you’re gonna learn the importance of warming up, and how to warm up with specific video routines…because I’m a nice person.

This is so critical for training safely that whenever we design a workout for our coaching clients, it always starts with a proper warm-up. So I’m excited to share these warm-up tips and tricks with you too.

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In this guide we’ll cover the following (click to go to that section):

Stretch before working out? No. Warm up instead.
Beginner Dynamic Warm-up Exercises and Video
3 Advanced Dynamic Warm-up Exercises and Videos
15 Quick Dynamic Warm-Up Exercises to Prevent Injury
This stuff is so important because getting injured sucks.

And every single day I watch people wander into the gym, immediately lie down on a bench, and start cranking out their workout with a heavy weight within seconds.

This makes me weep for humanity.

These people are just WAITING to get injured. They’re essentially playing with dynamite (also not recommended).

Playing with dynamite is not recommended
So you’re reading the right article.

Also, if you’re interested in a program that tells you exactly how to warm up and work out, you may like our new app!

Nerd Fitness Journey will set you on an adventure that will tell you exactly when to workout, when to warm up, and when you should rest. No guesswork needed.

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Should I Stretch Before A Workout? No. Warm Up Instead

Above all else, the most important thing you can do when working out is to warm up properly.

Now, you might be saying to yourself, “Come on. Surely it’s not the MOST important thing…”

To which I’d reply: “First, don’t call me Shirley. Secondly, if you don’t have enough time to warm up, then you don’t have enough time to work out.”


So WHY is it so important?

Think of your muscles like rubber bands.

Your muscles are kind of like this.
If you spend all day sitting at a desk, hunched over a keyboard, those rubber bands have gone almost completely unused.

Then, if you go to a gym and immediately start lifting heavy weights or sprinting really fast, those cold, unstretched rubber bands get pulled apart very quickly and can get snapped or pulled out of shape.


So, what about just regular, static stretching before working out?


As we point out in “Should you stretch before or after your workout?“:

“A consolidation of studies showed there aren’t many benefits to static stretching before workouts.

For starters, static stretching will not result in the reduction of the chance of injury.

Also, static stretching can actually decrease your potential for strength gains and performance.”

However, dynamic warm-ups – what you’ll learn in this article and what we focus on with our 1-on-1 coaching clients – are AWESOME for prepping you to get ready to strength train:

Think of it like a pregaming for your muscles – except replace “alcohol” with “awesome.” By jumping around and getting your muscles loose, active, warm, and ready for action, you are putting your muscles through their full range of motion and getting them ready to start handling heavier loads (strength training).

As pointed out in this study, “warming up” can also help reduce soreness after a workout.

On top of that, doing a dynamic warm-up can help activate your central nervous system, priming your muscles for a great workout that produces your best effort.

Add “improved blood circulation” to the list of benefits of warming up, which will help you perform well in each exercise.

Need another reason? When your body is properly warmed up, your muscles and joints are ready for maximum flexibility, which means you can perform each exercise with PROPER form (like deep barbell squats, for example) that maximize results and minimize the risk of injury.

So, whether you are running or strength training…a proper warm-up is probably the most important 5-10 minutes of your day.

Still with me?

Great. If you have been injured in the past, and you’re learning to warm up so you can stop stalling out on your progress, let us help!

We create custom workout solutions with nutritional guidance for busy people like you.

In other words, we help you get strong and eat better, every step of the way.

Learn more about our amazing Coaching App and how it’ll change your life:

Beginner Dynamic Warm-Up Video And Exercises

The above video comes from Senior Coach Staci Ardison, whose success story is here (and she’s now a lead trainer in our NF Coaching Program)

Don’t overthink this: Your goal is to elevate your heart rate, put your muscles and joints through their range of motion to warm them up and make sure everything is functioning properly, and preparing your body to strength train!

This will get you prepped for a day of getting stronger.

If you read the above paragraph and thought: “Yes I am doing strength training, please tell me more Steve! More!”

Firstly, thanks for saying please – your mom taught you well.

Next: let us help get you strong, safely! We help busy people go from strength-training-newbie to strength training badasses.

Whether you’re doing bodyweight or new to weight training, we create a workout program and provide food guidance that’s specific to YOUR life.

Our coaching program will change your life (I promise). Learn more here:

3 Advanced Dynamic Warm-Ups And Videos

#1) Here is an Advanced Warm-up Circuit you can do anywhere:

Jump rope: 2-3 minutes (optional)
Jumping jacks: 50 reps(pull your shoulder blades back, extend arms and really focus on the movement)
Bodyweight Squats: 20 reps
Lunges: 5 reps each leg
Hip extensions: 10 reps
Hip rotations: 10 reps each leg (like you’re stepping over a fence)
Forward leg swings: 10 reps each leg.
Side leg swings: 10 reps each leg
Push-ups: 10-20 reps
Spider-man steps: 5 each leg
This particular warm-up might be more difficult than your actual workout, especially if you’re following something like The Beginner Bodyweight Workout.

Yes, there is a lot of work put on your hips, butt, legs, and core. As nerds/desk jockeys, these tend to be the muscles that are the tighest and least active, and thus most susceptible to an injury.

If your arms and chest are particularly tight or sore, you can throw two more movements as well:

Arm swings (holding your arms straight out to the side, and then swing them and cross them in front of your chest)
Shoulder rotations (holding your arms straight out to the side, and move your arms in a circular motion, making bigger circles each time)
Are you a runner?

#2) Check out our warm-up routine specifically designed for runners:

You can also check out our Beginner’s Guide to Running for more tips on how to run safely.

#3) Here’s another advanced dynamic warm-up video from my coach, Anthony, which also covers a lot of Mobility:

When it comes time for your workout, if you are doing heavy strength training (with barbells or dumbbells), make sure you do some warm-up sets before jumping into the weight you’ll be training with for EACH EXERCISE.

Always start with a set using just the bar to work on your form and get your body used to the movement.

Then, do a few sets of just a few reps with increasing weight (but won’t tire you out) and THEN start your workout.

It’s something we bring up before every workout in Nerd Fitness Journey, our new habit-building app! If you want, you can test drive it right now for free!