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Lunge Warm-Up - Jay Johnson - insidenikerunning.nike.com

Published by
CoachJay   on Dec 23 2008, 12:36 PM
 

By incorporating all three planes of motion, the Lunge Warm-Up workout gets you warmed up to run while also helping to strengthen your core. It includes five exercises:

-Front Lunge
-Front Lunge with Twist
-Side Lunge
-Back and to the Side
-Back Lunge

Watch the video above to see how to perform each exercise properly, then click HERE to download a PDF detailing the entire routine.

Originally posted here


*Note - Okay, in early August we shot these videos for Nike on the CU campus in Boulder. The Lunge Warm-Up is the most important video in my opinion, yet to the casual observer it probably looks like the easiest routine in a set of elementary routines...and in one sense they're right - the lunge warm-up is an easy warm-up routine, but it's also extremely important for a runner. Why? Because the athlete is forced to work in all three planes of motion - frontal plane, sagittal plane and transverse plane - which is crucial for any athlete in any sport.* That's the idea - if you're a serious distance runner and you want to train harder, whether you need to up your training volume or up your intensity, you need to be able to handle the mechanical stresses placed on your body that come with great training loads. The problem is that all of the miles you've put in to become a better runner have likely come at the cost of your general athleticism; you probably had better proprioception, better posture, better flexibility and were generally a better athlete the first year you trained seriously then you are now. And to me, that begs a simple question, "How much athleticism should a distance runner lose as the building their aerobic system through years of training?"

This is where the moving in all three planes of motion comes in. In this warm-up you simply remind your bodythat even though it will spend the then next 50-150 minutes moving primarily in the sagittal plane, with a little bit of transverse plane oscillation, it is capable of a much greater range of motion (ROM) in all three planes then you'll ask of it in during the run. If firmly believe that if you do the lunge warm-up daily the chance that you'll be injured later that week, month or year decreases.

I did not come up with this warm up - this warm-up is a watered down, dumbed down version of physical therapist Gary Gray's Lunge Matrix. I bring this up both for full disclosure of sources but also because:

a) PTs who work with athletes usually do a good job of asking assigning exercises with the greatest efficacy; they will only ask an athlete to do exercises that will help them improve because they know that the more time athlete spends with the PT the less time they spend improving in their given sport

and

b) Gary Gray definitely knows how to provide athletes with a "functional foundation" that will allow them to excel in their chosen sport.

Okay, we're almost done. Before I answer the question above I challenge everyone of you who has read this to write in. Why? Because I KNOW you don't completely buy this - which is fine - all serious runners I've ever been around are skeptical about any and all non-running activities that claim to help them run faster. So post your questions and concerns in the comments section and I'll get back to you.

So my answer to the question "How much athleticism should a distance runner lose as the building their aerobic system through years of training?" I'll answer with the following hypothetical. If a guy could dunk a volleyball in HS and he ran 1:55 and 4:20, then I think he will loose some of that ability if he runs sub 14:00 in college, yet I don't think that he should lose so much he can dunk a golf ball. Yes, you'll lose some of you dynamic, ballistic ability as you run more and more miles, but you shouldn't lose so much athleticism that you're unable to replicate 80-90% of the athletic things you did before you became a runner.

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1 comment(s)  
manley
Jay-
I am becoming a believer due to my observation that soccer girls who "dual sport" into cross country or track seem to have fewer injuries than our full-time runners. I attribute this to all of their lateral work and ballistic drills. Coincidence? I no longer think so. I am preparing to put together a strength routine that my spring track athletes can perform 3 times-per-week. My question is: which one? I have the Building a Better Runner DVD, and I am leaning toward the Pedestal routine, along with lunges, single leg squats, calf raises, and some upper-body work. Any thoughts?

Thanks for your continued passion for our sport!
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