The World of Hoops Warm-up

What if there were something really simple you could do to drastically improve your season?  I’m here today to tell you, there is.  It’s something you probably haven’t given much thought to before, the way your team warms up.  I have played or coached basketball for years, and the basketball warm-up usually looks something like this:  Some lazy shooting around, some stretching that players or coaches learned in gym class, then maybe lay-up lines.  The real truth is, this does NOT get players ready to play basketball…physically or mentally.


A proper warm-up serves several purposes.  

  • Helps repair and recover your body from the work you did in your practice or game the day before
  • “Wakes up” the muscles & enzymes that fuel physical activity
  • Increases our body temperature, which gets oxygen to our muscles, and gets us ready to move
  • Gives our nervous system a shot in the arm making our brains ready to send and receive information to our bodies so we perform at our peak.
  • And most importantly… it increases mobility, flexibility, recovery, and prevents injury

The WOH warm-up takes about 20 minutes and will leave you feeling fresh and ready to dominate everyone on the court or ready to kill it in the weight room.  Trust me…I’ve had many days where it just feels like I’m going to have a bad workout. But 20 minutes later I’m done with the WOH warm-up and I feel ready to go…

The World of Hoops Warm-up has 4 parts:

  1. Full body muscle activation (Preferably 2-3 minutes on a Concept 2 rower, or a Schwinn AirDyne…but planks will do as a substitute)
  2. Foam rolling & lacrosse ball work (This is soft-tissue or myofascial work…can be torture if you are sore, but WELL worth it)
  3. Dynamic movement & mobility (A little mobility for just about every part of the body)
  4. Muscle activation and activity build-up (This is where you reallyget ready to do work).
  5. Optional workout specific work

The World of Hoops Warm-up takes into account all the parts mentioned above in a 20 minute, 4 part warm-up (with an optional 5th part)

1. Full body muscle activation through running, rowing, AirDyne riding, or basketball movements
2. Soft tissue work / Foam rolling & lacrosse ball (This is soft-tissue or myofascial work…can be a little tough if you are sore, but WELL worth it)
3. Dynamic movement & mobility (A little mobility for just about every part of the body)
4. Muscle activation and activity build-up (This is where you really get ready to do work)
5. Optional skill or workout specific warm-up

The WOH Warm-up

Part 1: Full Body Activation (3 minutes)
Choose one of the following
Jog 800 meters (or approximately 3 minutes if you can’t measure distance) at 50% effort3 minutes on a Schwinn AirDyne bike or a Concept 2 Rowing machine
Court warm-up: 2 laps around the gym, run backwards down and back (full court), defensive slides down and back (full court), Cariocadown and back (full court)….all at about 50% effort

Part 2: Soft Tissue Work (3 minutes)
Complete rolling each area for approximately 20 seconds on each leg
Adductor
IT Band
Calf
Quad

Part 3: Dynamic movement and mobility (4 minutes)
Regular elbow plank: 1 minute
Wrist circles (10 each direction)
Arm Circles, both arms (10 each direction)
Arm Rotations (10 each direction)
Fire Hydrant Circles (10 each direction, each leg…40 total)
Mountain climbers (10 each leg, 20 total)
Iron Cross (10 each leg, 20 total)
Cossack stretch (10 each leg, 20 total…1 second pause at top of each rep)
Standing Superman (10 each leg, 20 total…1 second pause at top of each rep)
Samson Stretch (5 each leg, 10 total…2-3 second pause at bottom of each rep)

Band work (5 minutes)
– Do all exercises with one ankle/leg, then move to the other ankle/leg
Ankle eversion/inversion (10 reps each ankle)
Ankle flexion/extension (10 reps each ankle)
Hamstring extensions (10 reps each leg)
Hamstring hold/relax (10 reps each leg)
Iron cross extensions (10 reps each leg)
Quad hold/relax (10 reps each leg)

Part 4: Muscle Activation & Build-up (4 minutes)
100x boxer shuffle
100x double unders
15x jump squats
15x tuck jumps

Part 5: Optional workouts/practice specific warm-up if needed

Click below to download PDF of the warm-up as well as descriptions of each movement in the warm-up

About Joe Lucas

Joe Lucas is the founder of The World of Hoops. DSC_8916 He has 25 years of experience playing basketball, training basketball players, and coaching basketball. The World of Hoops provides intelligent and intense basketball training to take basketball players to the next level.

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