How to Warm-up Before You Go For a Hike

Written by Becky

Most people focus on stretching after a hike but few actually perform a warm-up before they start their journey. The main reason for doing a warm-up before hiking is to increase blood flow to your muscles to prepare them for the activity you are about to do. What this really means is that you can actually decrease your risk of injury. Who doesn’t want less injuries? It is also a good way to check in with your body and see if you have any areas of soreness or discomfort that might need some extra stretching before you start.

Any warm-up should consist of dynamic movements that are specific to the activity you are about to do. You are probably use to the more traditional static stretching where you hold a stretch for 30 or more seconds. Dynamic stretching differs in that you move through a comfortable range of motion. The stretches should be quick with controlled, purposefully movements. The goal is to gently warm-up the muscles so gradually increase your range of motion with each movement.

In the video below I take you through a complete dynamic warm-up specifically for hikers. This warm-up shouldn’t take longer than five minutes and can be done right at the trailhead before you start your hike. The warm-up is focused on movements of the hips and legs but I have included a dynamic shoulder stretch which is especially important for carrying a backpack. Watch the video below for the complete hiker’s warm-up routine.

Warm-up For Your Hike


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