With so many different workout machines and equipment out there, it may be hard to decide which machines should be used for what. One thing is for certain, warming up is essential to a great workout. It can loosen muscles and joints, aid in preventing injury, heat the body up, help get the heart pumping and prepare the body for more strenuous activities. Here’s some of the best equipment you can use for warming up.
1. Rowing Machine
A rowing machine can help stretch the arms and the legs, and loosen up those muscles. Stretch the arms by using the oars. Start out slowly and increase intensity for about ten minutes. There is no need to go all out and row hard; this is just preparation for the actual exercise. Prepping the body for any exercise can prevent unwanted injuries.
Stretching on a treadmill can prepare the body for a walking or running session. It is very important to stretch before walking or running. Warming up before cardiovascular activity decreases injury and improves the overall success of a workout. Warming up should engage every muscle in the body and break a light sweat. Walk on a treadmill for about three to five minutes. Once this time period is met, slowly increase pace for five to ten minutes until the speed of a normal workout is met.
3. Stationary Bike
A stationary bike is a great low impact warm up that works for just about everyone. A bicycling warm up should be approximately five minutes long before any training session. Emphasize smooth movements and proper cycling form. If the stationary bike is used for the workout, start at a slower speed and once you hit the five-minute mark, slowly begin working to your normal cycling speed.
4. Elliptical Machine
A lot of individuals step on the elliptical machine as a leisurely, slow impact exercise warm up. Set the resistance on the machine low and warm up for about five to seven minutes. Warm up at a leisurely, walk-like pace or until you feel like you’re beginning to break a sweat. If the elliptical is going to be used as the actual workout as well, pick up the pace for about 20 minutes. Once you’re comfortable with the elliptical, changing the resistance will increase the difficulty of the workout.
5. Step Machine
The step machine is a means of cardiovascular warm up. Just place the feet in the pedals and start the motions of walking. The step machine is an easy to use machine and is great for beginners. Since the step machine falls into the category of aerobic activity, it’s essentially a warm up machine. Five minutes of walking on the step machine will get the heart and lungs working faster, as well as tone the muscles. The step machine also enhances the metabolism.