Jennifer Schwartz is a Master Level Muscle Activation Techniques™ Specialist and certified Exercise Physiologist. She oversees Alexandria Soccer Association’s Injury Prevention and Fitness program and her exercise and rehab practice in Alexandria.
What is the best warm-up for our ASA players? The answer is, it depends. It will vary across the curriculum. The goal of your team’s warm-up will match the age group’s objectives and improve their abilities to execute their level at a progressive pace.
In a previous blog, I indicated that a Pre-Session Routine is a process that a player will go through to prime their body and mind for optimal performance. The Pre-Session Routine is a mental transition to soccer from school, the warm-up is a team activity that will transition them towards game speed. Just as we want their curriculum objectives to improve week to week, we expect their athleticism to improve. We can use the team warm-up to achieve this.
At the most recent coaches meeting Robyn, ASA’s mental trainer, and I led the coaches through warm-up activities. We covered and referenced several great minds in sports medicine and performance.
The most successful athletes have fluid warm-ups that emphasize confidence building and personalized movements. The ASA players learn the recipes to this process which encompass many aspects of learning. The whole player can improve from consistently using Pre-Session routines and game speed warm-ups. I look forward to spring and reinforcing this on the field!