T Nation

Proper Warmups

When warming up for the bench press as far as percentiles on 1RM and set/rep scheme, what would be considered an adequate warmup. I ask because I did 135x5,155x5,185x5 and then did 215x5 for my first working set. It was a tough set and the second set of it was also a bit tough. Then my coach made me jump to 225 and that felt alot lighter than the 215 and I got 225 for 6 (it was a PR). Then I did 235 for 3 and 205 9. So it seems because of my shitty warmups the working sets were seemingly hard, which makes me think my warmups are inadequate. What do you guys think a better routine percentile wise should be ?

Ask yourself - what is the purpose of your warm up sets? I see a lot of people doing tons of warm up sets and all it does is tire them out.

I see warm ups as serving two purposes:

  1. Warming up the muscles, literally in the temperature sense, and increasing blood flow.
  2. Waking up the nervous system

For #1, I usually just do dynamic stretches such as the stuff found on the Magnificent Mobility DVD. Sometimes I’ll also do ONE set of a light weight for around 5-10 reps.

For #2, I usually only do one or two moderately heavy sets of 1-3 reps, maximally accelerating the bar on each rep.

This has worked well for me. Others might have a better system for them.

yea I figured it might be lifter specific. I think it neuroligical warm up could be a speed bench at 155 2x5 as fast as possible and then a muscle targetted warmup at 2x3 at 75%. I guess its one of those things to findout about your self.

to get ready forthe work sets in the bech…
i first do some high rep …controled sets
then a moderate weight set of paused reps…

[quote]skizac wrote:
Ask yourself - what is the purpose of your warm up sets? I see a lot of people doing tons of warm up sets and all it does is tire them out.

I see warm ups as serving two purposes:

  1. Warming up the muscles, literally in the temperature sense, and increasing blood flow.
  2. Waking up the nervous system

For #1, I usually just do dynamic stretches such as the stuff found on the Magnificent Mobility DVD. Sometimes I’ll also do ONE set of a light weight for around 5-10 reps.

For #2, I usually only do one or two moderately heavy sets of 1-3 reps, maximally accelerating the bar on each rep.

This has worked well for me. Others might have a better system for them.[/quote]

ditto…

I sometimes have a “problem” getting started. for me it’s mostly mental. I usually just play a song or something that gets me jazzed about lifting plus I visualize myself lifting the weights before I actually do it.

Another thing I do to warm up on pressing movements that works very well for me is to do push ups on d-handles hung on chains attached to the top of my power rack. These really get the stabilizers fired up and ready for the work sets. If you don’t have that option the next best thing is to do push ups on an exercise ball. It looks ghey as shit but very effective. Give it a shot sometime.

In terms of warming up for a 1 rep max there is an article posted here that for me personally, was very helpful.

Warming up for work sets etc… usually some light stretching, one light set for 8-10 reps, and then two heavier sets.

It’s really a personal thing. Experiment and find what works for you and what feels right.

I started spending significantly less time warming-up and moving that time over to my cool down and it has worked out very well for me.

I do about 10 minutes doing dynamic joint mobility drills as a neural warm-up then hop on whatever my first exercise is.

For barbell stuff I’ll generally warm-up with the bar, then add 40-50 lbs per set for warming-up, eventually getting into a few lighter work sets before hitting my top weight.