11 Apr 2016
Winter is coming once again and the importance of warming up before playing squash becomes much more apparent. Going from the warmth of your snuggly bed or office to the chill of the courts is not only a physical shock, but a psychological barrier that everyone must deal with.
Stiffness through muscles and joints is one of the most obvious physical limitations of being cold. There are many adjustments your body needs to make prior to lunging around the court, which means a suitable warm-up is essential – all year round!
Warming up your body increases blood flow to the working muscles which results in decreased muscle stiffness, reduced risk of injury and improved performance. It also encourages psychological preparation by helping you focus on the game.
A proper warm up will:
- Release adrenaline which increases your heart rate.
- Increase blood flow which enhances the delivery of oxygen and nutrients.
- Warm your muscles to make them more flexible.
- Prime your nerve to muscle pathways to be ready for the match.
- Prepare you mentally by clearing your mind and increasing your focus.
These changes don’t happen instantly. You should start your warm up at by going easy and gradually increase the intensity until you are ready to play.