/ An evidence based guide to warming up.
Hope this helps anyone looking for a structure for the beginning of their session.
not really....i was looking for an argument about climate change :p
It may prove useful to climbers, which is good, but the similarity to Neil Gresham's DVD is strongly evident, in my opinion. Right down to the bongo/djembe sounds, and the script/vocal style. Highly derivative - again, just my opinion.
I thought this was interesting, although I'm not sure what there's much "evidence based" about it beyond the unreferenced claim about a 100 moves being required to warm up hands/forearms.
I confess to being the world's worst at warming up and have spent decades somehow avoiding injury without doing any deliberate warming up at all. Until fairly recently, starting off with on the most powerful problems before I got tired was pretty much a deliberate strategy! However, my daughter is far better educated in such things and now insists that her aged dad at least does the basics.
So, I'm not knocking warming up, and I can see that increasing regional blood flow makes sense, but how much real evidence is there that it works? And do you mean avoiding muscle injuries (which I can see makes sense) or tendon and joint damage? I'm not sure what 'increasing lubrication to the elbows' means for instance. It sounds logical but what evidence is there that there's ever not enough (in a healthy joint)? Increasing the volume of fluid in a synovial joint is usually very definitely not a good thing.
I thought that the evidence was that stretching as part of warm up has no overall effect on injury avoidance and if anything is associated with a slight increase in injury. My understanding is that stretching is best carried out as part of the warm down. Also, on performance, I thought the evidence was that stretching reduces power for about half an hour. Another reason to keep the stretching in the warm down phase.
> My understanding is that stretching is best carried out as part of the warm down.
Only kidding, although I find the whole logic of that a bit difficult too. However, I'm about to make a serious effort to get a bit more flexible (even for a shortarse my bridging is pitiful), so I'll do some (carefully supervised) stretching at the end of sessions.
I've recently spent some time helping my daughter revise for her PE GCSE and I'm pretty unimpressed by the half-understood anatomy and physiology, and completely arbitrary pseudoscientific lists and classifications that form the syllabus.
> I've recently spent some time helping my daughter revise for her PE GCSE and I'm pretty unimpressed by the half-understood anatomy and physiology, and completely arbitrary pseudoscientific lists and classifications that form the syllabus.
I know what you mean. My wife is a physio, with lots of years of practical work, professional development and her own research, and she knows that a huge amount of sports and physio advice is not evidence-based and the evidence that exists is often pretty weak or completely flawed.
> I thought that the evidence was that stretching as part of warm up has no overall effect on injury avoidance and if anything is associated with a slight increase in injury. My understanding is that stretching is best carried out as part of the warm down.
I have been injured a few times when I done static stretching before any sort of training. Easy dynamic stretching for warm up and static stretching for warm down.
My take on this is that warming up is doing the activity you are about to do at a lower intensity. Warming down is doing the activity you just were doing but at a lower intensity.
Stretching is stretching and I do it so that I get the best possible range of motion from my joints to help my body do that activity more efficiently. I tend to do this after exercise as the muscles are warm and less likely to tear. I also like to have an excuse to lie down for 20 minutes and not help make the dinner.
I too picked up on this, it was stated at the start that this was to be 'evidence based'...but no evidence was presented.
I saw a similar study done by and Australian university and it included figures that presented the number of injuries sustained by people who did certain types of warm up compared with others and those who did no warm-ups. I was expecting some similar figures to qualify the 'evidence based' claims.
To be fair, Ollie might mean that the warm-up regime is based on evidence that he's read, but it's a bit of a red rag to the over-educated UKC audience! However, it's a good presentation and seems pretty sensible as these things go.
Actually the study I read and mentioned above demonstrated that people who warm up generally have a higher injury rate than those who do not.
30 years ago I competed at quite a high level in Judo, nowadays I shudder to thing of the warm up routines the coaches gave us then. All about big circles with the arms, hips and neck...all super-pronating the joints way beyond their intended scope. It's a wonder we weren't permanently injured tbh (well, actually we probably were :))
> Actually the study I read and mentioned above demonstrated that people who warm up generally have a higher injury rate than those who do not.
On the subject of stretching a lot of the bad press was from military studies comparing to warm up for incidence of all injuries, including traumatic ankle sprain, knee sprain, etc. More recent research which filters for more specific injury eg non-traumatic musculoskeletal rather than traumatic injury is now suggesting stretching does have significant role in preventing musculotendinous injury (elbow anyone?). The power debate is relevant but again you gotta think about what you are stretching, when and how. I'm sure there is research which shows dynamic neural stretching pre-event will increase power. One should also consider the performance decriments or lack of progreess due inability to engage in quality training due to injury. k
Could you translate? Stretching your nerves is almost always a really bad idea.
can you give some references (i am not doubting you just dont know where to
look - which journals etc) for this sort of thing
The evidence that I've read suggests:
'Dynamic stretching' (i.e. moving your limbs gently through the range of motion they'll experience as part of the exercise session before starting) is a good warm up
'Static stretching' (i.e. developing your range of motion beyond its current scope by holding a fixed position) (a) weakens the muscles for the session and (b) slightly increases the risk of injury
It can be appropriate after exercise.
PNF stretching seems interesting, also called contract and relax stretching. This 'uninhibits' the nerves that prevent you from using your current available range of motion without actually stretching the muscles or tendons.
That's my understanding too. I interpret it as the 'touch your toes', swing your arms in big circles, type of stretching that we used to be encouraged to do 30 years ago is bad. I now warm up by basically starting slowly. e.g. some simple traversing, some slow v0 boulder problems.
Nothing more energetic than that and certainly nothing that places any noticable strain on any muscles or joints.
> 'Static stretching' (i.e. developing your range of motion beyond its current scope by holding a fixed position)
Static stretching simply means not dynamic. It doesn't necessarily entail moving the body into positions beyond the current range.
> That's my understanding too. I interpret it as the 'touch your toes', swing your arms in big circles, type of stretching that we used to be encouraged to do 30 years ago is bad.
Hang on - this is static stretching we're talking about, isn't it. How can you "interpret that to mean swing your arms in big circles", which is clearly dynamic?
Hi its the Indy climbing wall on Anglesey.
It's a great little wall, worth a visit if you are in the vicinity.
Hey, sorry didn't include the references. My evidence comes from personal reading. That I will try and update on here.
Particularly the 100 moves case is based upon several studies. Two key sources were the book 'one move too many' which I would highly recommend and the second is a study on the bio mechanical properties of crimping (link below to abstract).
I am suggesting muscle and tendon damage is the problem. But for climbers it is primarily the tendons. This is mostly due to the rate of tissue adaptation. Muscles can adapt to exercise within 3 weeks, however tendons can take years. If your tendons are not warmed up research suggests more damage (micro tears) can be caused. This will create inflammation in the damaged area which puts pressure on surrounding pain receptors causing tendinitis. If you do not rest properly, this will happen more quickly and easily each session. Warming up will help prevent this in the first place.
With regards to static stretching that seems to be the hot topic. There is evidence for and against. My personal view on the topic is from a gymnastics background were mobility exercises were used in the warm up, these consist of dynamic movements throughout a normal joint and muscle range whilst static stretching is for after exercise to develop or maintain flexibility. The old saying of warm up to stretch don't stretch to warm up.
So I targeted the evidence supporting mobility exercises which is not stretching, it targets joints not muscles. There is a lot of evidence for this which I have taken from gym instructor training and a sports science background.
This is just my point of view and I do believe an individual approach is always the most important as you can find evidence to back most things up. I have just taken on board what research I find most compelling.
Thanks for the response!!!
Thanks very much Mark. You'll have to get in touch with the examiners.
Stretching and Injury in Football: Current Perspectives
Stojanovic & Ostojic
Research in Sports medicine 2011
To stretch or not to stretch: the role of stretching in injury prevention and performance
McHugh & Cosgrave
Scandanavian Journal of Medicine and science in sports 2010
Elsewhere on the site
Perhaps the perfect Xmas gift for the climber in your life... Wild Country's Crack School has two of the worlds best crack... Read more
Tonight's Friday Night Video features the Norwegian town of Rjukan, once believed to be the home of the world's tallest... Read more
F ounded in 1993, Mountain Hardwear are a pretty young mountaineering clothing and equipment manufacturer but are also one of... Read more
Rock shoes stink – let’s face it. Boot Bananas are the perfect way to fight the funk and keep them fresh. They help... Read more
With four photos in this week's top ten, and a UKC gallery of stunning images we thought it was time we had a chat with... Read more