The Art of the Warm-up, Part 3: Perceived Exertion

As we addressed in part 2 of this series, often instructors and students incorrectly believe that a “warm-up” always means an easy intensity. To many of them, this translates as a waste of time, especially if they only have 40–50 minutes to exercise. If this is your line of thinking, remember that a body that is ill prepared for the intensity of the workout will not deliver. Your body will take the time it needs to get ready, regardless of what you ask of it, so pushing it too hard early on won’t do you much good. You are unlikely to benefit from those early high-intensity efforts anyway, so you might as well be nice to your body and be more progressive with your warm-up.

Remember this: the goal of the warm-up is not to gain fitness; the goal is to prepare the body for the harder segment that follows, so it can indeed gain fitness.

Other parts in this series:

Part 1 – Is Your Warm-Up Sufficient?
Part 2 – What’s Happening Physiologically?

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