Fit Tip: The Importance of Warming Up

At The Dailey Method we always begin class with either a series of marching or squats. Our warm up helps you to prepare for class in a number of ways.
First, these exercises increase blood flow to all of your large muscle groups helping to prevent injury and improve your performance and stamina throughout the class. The warm up is also a time to bring focus to your alignment. Setting foot foundation and neutral spine alignment during warm up will help you to be more successful throughout the class and carry more functional posture with you throughout your day. Finally, the warm up is your time to prepare psychologically for your workout as well. It is a time to leave the rest of your day behind, set an intention for class, and truly give yourself the gift of focusing on your own body and your own health for a full hour.
Breathing is an integral part of your Dailey Method warm up. As you begin to march or squat your heart rate and your breath rate will slowly rise and your blood vessels will dilate to bring more oxygen to your muscles. Focus on your breath during your warm up to increase your stamina and tune in to the physiologic changes happening in your body. Use your breath effectively during the warm up (let your breath be heard!) and carry that connection with you as you continue your warm up in our Dailey Method plank series.
The value of focusing on your breath goes beyond the physiological. Focused breathing gives you an opportunity to ground yourself in the room and become present. This class is time for YOU so allow yourself to be fully present to receive the maximum physiological and psychological benefits from every class.
Setting an intention during the warm up can change the energy you bring to your class. I find that using our Dailey Method word of the month is a great way to construct your intention. Here are a few examples working with our word of the month – MOVE: 
1) Mindful/focused movement – notice where there is wasted energy and focus on being more efficient. Life practice: choose how to spend your energy versus letting people or circumstances pull you.
2) Moving with boundaries – feel the boundaries created by your best alignment & engagement and stay honest to them. At the same time, work at your edge because that’s where the change happens – that’s how your boundaries grow & expand. 
3) Move with grace – find the balance between effort and ease. Work hard but use the breath to keep it graceful on the outside. Life practice: be centered & strong on the inside, but stay kind and open on the outside – receptive to life. 
4) Appreciate movement – rock out/have fun/dance/feel sexy & FEEL how lucky we are to be able to experience our bodies right now. Enjoy the dance of life.
It’s pretty amazing how much we accomplish in the first 2 minutes of class, isn’t it?! Then we move you even deeper into your warm up and small muscle stabilizers when it’s time to plank!
We’ll see you in the warm up,
Jill and Kerry

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