Warm-up Rediscovered

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stretchI feel vindicated the Play Magazine section of the Sunday November 2, New York Times. They talked about things in the article some of us figured out 35 years ago – (Sorry for the sarcasm) but warm-up is just that, it is movement. Two of the exercises they illustrate in the article the straight leg march and the scorpion are two exercises I would NEVER do in warm-up. I think they are not appropriate for warm-up and actually set the body up for injury. I was disappointed that nothing was said about the order and sequence in warm-up. I was left to believe that if you just throw a bunch of exercises together and call it dynamic then it is OK. Nothing could be further from the truth. I think warm-up must be orchestrated like a ballet. It should build in tempo from slower deliberate movements to fast dynamic movements leading directly into practice or the game. Each of the last five teams we have played with Venice volleyball have done some version of the so called movement prep. It has been interesting to watch. One team spent 18 minutes on this stuff. All at a walking tempo, almost at Tai Chi rhythm. Folks that does not prepare you to play a ballistic game like volleyball. Our warm-up is 6 to 8 minutes long, depending on how the head coach and I read the team. It is dynamic leading to ballistic jumping because that is what they do in the game. This is not rocket science, it is common sense. Go to www.gambetta.com to get our DVD on Warm-up and Preparation also see the chapter in my Athletic development book.
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Vern Gambetta

Vern Gambetta

Director at Gambetta Sports Training Systems
Vern is the Director of Gambetta Sports Training Systems. He has been the a conditioning coach for several MLS teams as well as the conditioning consultant to the US Men's World Cup Soccer team. Vern is the former Director of Conditioning for the Chicago White Sox and New York Mets. He has lectured and conducted clinics in Canada, Japan, Australia and Europe and has authored six books and over one hundred articles related to coaching and sport performance in a variety of sports. He has a BA in teaching with a coaching minor and an MA in Education with an emphasis in physical education from Stanford University.
Vern Gambetta

@coachgambetta

Athletic Development Coach & Consultant. Founder of GAIN Network. Proud dad. Love to read everything.
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