Training for the 10 City Bridge Run, I have been following a program designed for marathon runners by veteran running coach Bob Williams from Portland, Oregon.
I wrote to him with details of my training and how everything was progressing, mentioning how I had experienced some discomfort and loss of range of movement particularly in the ankles before increasing my stretching regime.
He wrote back with great advice. I am passing it on here so you too might benefit from what he had to say about The Dynamic Warm Up
I’d definitely employ dynamic stretching to enhance your flexibility.
Coach Bob Williams, Team Oregon
Engaging in a dynamic (constantly moving) warm-up procedure is the most effective method of getting the body ready for vigorous athletic play. This warm up procedure encompasses dynamic movements that will:
- Stretch important soft tissues while priming the body’s central nervous system;
- Increase tissue and core temperature;
- Stimulate balance, coordination and ankle/foot proprioception;
- Facilitate neuromuscular movement patterns that ultimately enhance movement efficiency, power and economy.
Repeat 4-5 times per week.
Before you begin:
- Warm up with light aerobic activity for 5-10 minutes
- Performing the exercises detailed below for 10 m, walk and jog for 10 m to slowly stimulate your heart rate, repeat the exercise, jog for 10 m.
Knee Grabs–knee and hip flexibility
Come up high on toes while brining one knee to the chest and pull knee tightly to chest with the foot dorsi flexed- to stretch the hip flexors, alternate legs as you walk in a straight line, stay tall, land quietly and keep the foot /toe cocked up; Gradually pick up your tempo as you become proficient.
Prisoner Walks–hip mobility
With hands together on the head, take a step forward, bend the knee, bring right leg up to waist level, drop toe to ground and bring bended knee up and swing right leg out to side while keeping the shoulders square and don’t turn the hips. In same motion while leg is coming down, step with the same leg, bring opposite leg up and repeat.
Russian Kicks–Dynamic hamstring flexibility
Arms out straight out to the side, kick right leg up straight and reach to toe with left hand as leg is kicked up and straight–don’t bend knee, keep back straight while twisting to reach the toe, each arm swings back.
Dyno Walks–dynamic and proprioceptive ability
Start standing tall, take a step with left foot and with right hand, slowly bend down to touch near the foot with right leg coming off ground and extend straight out; come back up to tall position while taking another step with right foot and continue the process of touching the toe with left hand and right leg extends straight out behind.
Toe Touches–Sacrum and active hamstring flexibility
Take a step with right foot and then left foot comes together, slowly bend over, locking knees, and reach to touch the toes. With good rhythm, step with opposite foot and bend to touch toes; continue forward with goal of gradually bending further with each step, hands going farther down.
Over and Under the Hurdle–hip mobility
Standing tall, step to the right high over a pretend hurdle, Once over it with right leg, bring the other leg over the same hurdle but do not let the feet cross. Feet must be straight ahead and landing perfectly in alignment; next, step again to the right, drop your butt and the hips low and pretend to step under and through the hurdle. Do not let the feet cross.
Open Hip Skip Reverse–hip mobility and overall coordination
Hands on hips, step backwards while bringing the leg up and out and down while skipping on the toe of the opposite leg that was brought up and out. Bring leg way up and out and down and keep shoulder square.
High Knee Karaoke–body symmetry
Moving the side, step with the right foot over the left and bring the left foot behind the right leg and throw the right leg as high up as possible over the left leg and repeat in a skipping motion.
Lunge and Twist–thoracic spine mobility & chest stretch
With your arms held straight out and hands together, take a big step and lunge by dropping the knee to the ground and twist the body around to the same side with arms extended outward. Keep arms extended out the entire time. Watch hands.
Toe Flickers–ankle linear mobility
Hands on hips, flicking the feet out in front, bouncing on the toes in a straight line.
Ankle Flickers–lateral ankle mobility
Hands on hips, flicking the ankles to the side and feet landing straight out, feet not coming together, bouncing legs straight out.
Crab Walk–shoulder, rotators and patella activation and conditioning
While sitting down extend legs with arms behind you, extend legs out and “walk” forward.
Inch Worm–core strength activation, dynamic Achilles tendon flexibility
Start in push-up position with arms extended, knees locked, and gradually “inch” your fee towards the hands. Keep the legs straight.
Good Mornings (Arm Rolls)–shoulder and body symmetry
Come up on toe with the arms swinging up high and backward with each step.
Go Steps–dynamic body symmetry and coordination
Short sprint movements like the A skips with knees brought up to 90 degrees, moving knees quickly and arms moving at 90 degrees like a sprint position.
Thanks Coach Williams!