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Hello bendy people!

I came across this post on Instagram today and was wondering what you guys think. The main argument is that warm-ups might be skipped altogether for strength training. I find the statement a bit oversimplified.

I am mainly talking about the application of skipping warm-ups to strength training. That is, does one actually need to perform an exercise at considerably lower intensity before moving on to higher loads (lets say >75% of 1RM). I’m already ignoring inefficient warm-ups that have nothing to do with the actual exercise here (e.g, treadmill before a strength workout). I’m with @Kit_L here who repeatedly claims that the most effective warm-up is the actual movement that one wants to perform at a lower intensity. If I remember correctly I have also heard him say “Have you ever seen a cat warming up?”. 😊

I assume the fact whether you might skip your strength training warm-up depends on several factors:

  • The actual working loads: higher reps with lighter loads vs lower loads with higher loads
  • Microperiodization between the sets of the actual exercise: Considering three main progressions from set to set (ascending, descending, wave loading)
  • Spread of the working load between sets: Difference between minimum and maximum loads used
  • How used one is to this kind of practice

Without having tested anything I would assume it would make most sense for ascending work loads with a somewhat higher spread and not if you work up to a heavy first set and then decreasing the weights. I would also say it might work if you perform lower reps with a higher number of sets and a carefully selected a proper spread.

The probably more important question is if the ability to “start cold” can actually be trained. It seems to be a worthy goal. I talked to some people that do not do warm-ups in the traditional sense anymore and they commonly agreed that one has slowly to get into this kind of practice. After the initial period it worked well for them.

I’ll personally give this a try during the next week and report back how it goes. Looking forward to your opinions and experiences!

Markus

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Philip likes being controversial :lol:

As with everything, the answer is: "It depends." Philip knows this, of course, but he's trying to push back against the status quo, so he presents it from the "unconventional" extreme.

6 hours ago, MarkusO said:

The probably more important question is if the ability to “start cold” can actually be trained.

I think that's what it boils down to, and the answer is of course yes, but it depends :lol: Up until the extremes of human performance, it should definitely be trainable. It's just a matter of making something part of your normal capacity. “Have you ever seen a cat warming up?” I agree with Kit's take on this, but you also don't see cats trying to deadlift 5x BW ;) All of the things they do are part of their normal capacity.

So sure, I think training to be able to use your strength and flexibility cold is a great goal. It means truly making the skill yours. Just don't expect to jump out of the bed in the morning and instantaneously Klokov :D

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6 hours ago, Nathan said:

Philip likes being controversial :lol:

It seems to work for him 😅. I've noticed that too, however the concept is intriguing. His only measure though seems to be the gain train 😅, not other things like joint health, for example.

6 hours ago, Nathan said:

 you also don't see cats trying to deadlift 5x BW ;)

I also don't see me doing that with any kind of warmup 😁. Let's assume we speak of general training and not extreme results. I have seen cats so sprinting like there is no tomorrow directly after lying lazy in the sun the whole time. On the other hand they stretch all day which cannot be said about the average office worker 😀.

6 hours ago, Nathan said:

It's just a matter of making something part of your normal capacity.

I agree, that's probably what it's boiling down to. However i have read little about this concept. I think it might make most sense if you work up to heavier loads anyway and have established some kind of capacity to start with heavier loads. But I'm not fully convinced yet.

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4 hours ago, MarkusO said:

It seems to work for him 😅.

For sure! People love controversial. Grab the popcorn!

4 hours ago, MarkusO said:

not other things like joint health, for example.

That's a very good point, too. Can I do it? Can I do it and stay healthy/well-rounded? Two very different questions.

4 hours ago, MarkusO said:

I have seen cats so sprinting like there is no tomorrow directly after lying lazy in the sun the whole time. On the other hand they stretch all day which cannot be said about the average office worker 😀.

Agreed, but again, I think it really just boils down to sprinting like there's no tomorrow being a skill that cats generally "own" as part of their normal capacity. Most cats own the strength, flexibility, and skill needed to achieve this feat. Then again, some domesticated cats might have lost these qualities... :ph34r:

 

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On 1/6/2021 at 4:01 AM, MarkusO said:

I’m with @Kit_L here who repeatedly claims that the most effective warm-up is the actual movement that one wants to perform at a lower intensity. If I remember correctly I have also heard him say “Have you ever seen a cat warming up?”. 😊

As Nathan says, 'it depends'. The most individual difference I can think of is (thinking back squats, weighted) what proportion of 3RM is the best place to start the lower-intensity movement at—assuming a working weight of 100kg, for three reps, say.

In our gym, it was always 'two plates', so 60kg. I always started at 60 kg – and my reasoning was simply I needed to start somewhere around that weight to make sure I had perfect form. Even starting at 70% or 75% didn't allow me to groove the movement in the new session in the same way. I have seen other more gifted colleagues than mine though start with 80 or 85% of their maximum for that day with no problems at all. As with all things, it depends on your own level of giftedness. Not all of us are cats by nature! The bottom line for me why is always, what does this feel like today?

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