Developing a proper warm up routine is crucial in any sport, and is especially important in high speed, high impact sports. It is utterly crucial to ensure that you are warmed up and ready to go for practices and games, as going into them could drastically increase your chances of injury, and can even result in diminished game play. Developing a healthy warm-up routine that is tailored to your needs and that includes all the essentials isn’t that difficult and can be done in a very short amount of time. If you are unsure of exactly what needs to be included in the routine, then talk to the coach.
One of the most important components to a well-rounded warm up routine stretches. You can’t get away with just a few casual, easy stretches either. You need to stretch each area of your body properly and multiple times to ensure that you are properly warmed up. This routine should be repeated daily, whether a game is happening or not, and whether a practice is happening or not. To maintain the physical requirements of the sport, you need to do your warm ups daily.
With your warm up routine, you can also implement some shooting drills that will serve not only to warm you up but measure your shooting ability improvement in a way that you can observe. You can do this by shooting a foot from the basket, making that shot three times, stepping another foot back, and making that shot three times. Repeating this for 10 minutes and seeing how far from the basket you get, and seeing how often you miss. Without anyone paying attention, you will be able to measure your improvements easily.
Some light jogging around the court would also be a good way to loosen up and improve your conditioning. For the first week of your routine, just jog around the court once. The second week, increase that to 2 times around. Be careful that you do not overexert yourself. If you feel that three times are a safe limit for you, stop there and just continue around the court three times each day. If you cannot get to practice, you can jog around your yard or even a local park. Just because you can’t get to practice, doesn’t mean you can’t find other ways to do your routine.
Dribbling drills are another important aspect of warm ups. Dribbling up one side of the court and taking a shot, the next time passing to someone, and shaking it up. This drill can be done in conjunction with a teammate and can also build team mechanics and get young and older players in tune with each other.
There are many more components that can be added to your warm-up routines, but you are going to want to keep it simple. Include something in your routine that will help you build on a weak spot in your game, and get advice from your coach on ways to change your routine to serve best you!
Photo credit: Dawn – Pink Chick