Returning to Sports? Experts Caution: Don’t Forget the Warm Up!

For the first time in their lives, many athletes are experiencing a prolonged absence from sports due to the COVID-19 pandemic. As restrictions lift and youth athletes return to sports and physical activity, physical therapy experts with Saint Barnabas Medical Center Rehabilitation stress the importance of warming up to support a safe return.

“Every ‘body’ returning to athletics has forgotten what it was like to perform, explains Dr. Michael Heitzman, II, Physical Therapist, Saint Barnabas Medical Center Rehabilitation at Millburn. Let’s turn it back on!”

Dr. Heitzman says a warm up should always include the following:

  • A rise in heart rate: jog, run, and do calisthenics to get the system primed.
  • Muscle activation: dynamic strength based exercises to awaken the muscles.
  • Joint motion: progressively move the limbs through their entire available range.
  • Performance: get up to full speed and power BEFORE you play.

With four locations in West Orange, Millburn and Livingston, the experienced and compassionate staff at Saint Barnabas Rehabilitation offers adults and children the specialized care they need to resume an active life after surgery, injury or illness. You do not need a prescription for physical therapy services. For high-risk patients who are unable to visit the center, telehealth therapy visits are an option.

Visit the Saint Barnabas Medical Center Rehabilitaiton website to learn more.