Before your team takes to the pitch for hockey practice or a match, every member should warm up. A warm-up gets the heart pumping vital oxygen around the body to reach all muscles that are about to be put to work. It will also reduce the chance of injury during play.
Here are a few exercises to include in your team’s warm up routine.
Start with a short jog around the hockey field. Don’t tire your team; just get their heart rates up and their muscles warm.
This is a dynamic form of stretching on the move and is great for team bonding as it gets all your players moving in unison.
Get your players to jog forward, bringing their knees up to a 90-degree angle. Keep the pace up on this exercise.
Again, get your players moving forward whilst trying to kick their buttocks when their legs are in the backwards motion.
Ask your players to stand still and rotate their arms in a wide circle, first in a forward motion for 30 seconds and then backward for the same amount of time.
Your team should all lunge with the right foot forward whilst the back leg bends. Get them to aim for a 90-degree angle at the knee joint.
At this point in the warm-up, you could be setting up the field hockey drills video for after the end of the training session. This style of hockey drills video can be purchased from a company such as https://www.sportplan.net/drills/Hockey/.
From the prone position on the floor, your team should each support themselves by their arms and toes, raising and lowering the body whilst keep the legs and back straight. Set a realistic number of push-ups because they are hard work.
For more exercises to include in a team warm-up, take a look at this Guardian article.
Cool down and stretch out
After a warm up session, it’s important that all your players cool down. Get them to jog slowly around the training area for five minutes. This helps the heart rate to return to a more restive state and allows the muscles to relax. Finally, don’t forget to add stretching of all muscle groups to the end of the session.