Warm Up for Training

A warm-up is a popular practice that is considered by the majority of basketball players and coaches to be an essential part of any training session. A warm-up is believed to improve the players ability in the subsequent exercise performance and reduce the incidence of sports related musculoskeletal injuries. A warm-up not only prepares the athlete for the training session to follow but can also improve the athlete's performance through mechanisms such as increased nerve conduction rate, improved force production and increased anaerobic energy provision.

The primary purpose is of the warm-up is to elevate the core temperature however coaches can also use this time to reinforce movement patterns and complete injury prevention work. Warm ups will generally follow a pattern of general movement and mobilization followed by more sport specific intensive warm-up.

General movement involves the use of light exercise to increase heart rate, blood flow, respiration and core muscle temperature. This is usually followed by dynamic stretching to increase Range Of Movement and then introduce sport specific movements. For example athletes begin with stationary shooting, progress to jump shots and finally player contact.

An example of warm-up for a basketball training session is outlined below incorporating the movement skills discussed in earlier chapters;

  • Jog court and back x 2
  •  Walking lunges to half court:
    • Toe and knees point forward
    • Hips square, chest up
    • Gradually increase length of lunge with each step
  • Single leg hamstring bridge 2 sets of 8/leg:
    • Hips square
    • Full range of motion
  • Side lunge back to baseline
    • Increase range with each step
    • Feet to point forwards throughout
  • Knee to wall calf mobility 10/leg
    • Heel remains on ground and player bends leg to touch knee to the wall, try to increase distance between toe and wall.
  • Squats 10
    • Feet just wider than shoulder width
    • Chest up
    • Hips back, knees forward over toes
    • Depth
    • Heels down
  • Step to vertical Jump 3/leg
    • Soft landing, absorb
    • Strong position – can you move in any direction from your landing point?
    • Knees remain over feet (don’t come in or out)
  • Partner jump to bump 5 each
    • Jump into air and upon landing partner will bump you.
    • Still land softly, absorb but be ready for impact...don’t get pushed over, be in position to move.
    • This can be progressed to getting bumped whilst still in the air
  • Single leg ½ Hop + Stick in 3 different directions
    • Lateral left, lateral right and forward in directions
    • Soft landing
    • Knees remain over feet