Key points …
- Incorporate your individual needs
- Warm up with structure
- Use every fuelling opportunity!
Warming up on game day is a crucial part of your match preparation, becoming mentally, physically and technically alert before kick off is a must if you are to start fast. You will normally see the professionals venture out onto the pitch anywhere from 35-50 minutes before kick off depending on their preferences. However, nowadays the warm up begins before the warm up; players will often have individual work they like to complete in the dressing room/warm up room normally including some foam rolling and mini band work, as well as some preferred stretching/mobility work. Guys with previous ankle problems will complete work on a single leg to increase their balance, others with specific tightness will try and foam roll it out – others will work through their own specific exercises to help them feel ‘switched on’ in the right areas.
Then it’s out onto the pitch to complete the team warm up using a RAMP framework – that is Raise (your heart rate and core temperature), Activate (the key muscles involved with footballing actions), Mobilise (the joints that need to be supple from the outset) and Potentiate (priming your nervous system for speed) their bodies prior to the football component of the warm up:
Raise: This will usually involve running, skipping, easy passing and moving with the ball, all with the aim of increasing your blood flow and core temperature.
Activate: This section will involve the lunging, squatting, RDL’s, single leg hops – all the movements that activate key muscles in the lower body!
Mobilise: This is where you will find your traditional opening and closing gate exercises, straight leg strikes and wide stance groin openers to name but a few.
Potentiate: This is where you will come to life and bridge from warm up to fast paced performance, this is why it is the sprinting, jumping and fast feet portion of your warm-up.
Throughout the warm-up it is crucial to stay loaded with fluids, ideally containing a blend of electrolytes and carbohydrates to prime your fuel stores for the impending 90 minutes. Hydrate90® has you covered, filled with carbohydrate and electrolytes; it has all the essential needed to fuel your performance