Best Off-Ice Warm-Up for Figure Skaters (Kristina Anderson)

Figure skating strength and conditioning expert Kristina Anderson shares a short off-ice warm-up intended to be used prior to on-ice training. The purpose of this kind of warm-up is to have the skater’s muscles go through a range-of-motion and get their muscles engaged and firing before stepping onto the ice.

The warm-up consists of 30 second intervals totaling 6.5 minutes. (Although Kristina mentions 5.5 minutes, it’s really 6.5 minutes.) The full warm-up sequence is:

1. Side to side shift
2. From side shift, twist and open (one side)
3. Shift to other side, then twist and open (other side)
4. Virtual kettlebell swing for hip flexor stretch and glute engagement
5. Bear crawl hand walk to plank, and back (slowly transition from bear crawl to inchworm)
6. Twisted planks (one side)
7. Twisted planks (other side)
8. Planks to leg kick through (one side)
9. Plank to leg kick through (other side)
10. Downward dog alternate shin tap with weight shift
11. Squat, hand walk to plank, return, stand up, repeat
12. Back lunge to forward knee lift (one side)
13. Back lunge to forward knee lift (other side)

After showing the exercises, Kristina discusses static vs dynamic stretching, and how skaters should focus on dynamic stretching before they skate. Static stretching in order to train flexibilty should only be done after skating, preferably after getting a good sweat going (thoroughly warmed up) and preferably in a warm environment.

At the end of the video Kristina notes that 30 seconds for each exercise is a good amount of time because it provides the warm-up and dynamic stretching benefit without introducing fatigue. The goal is to warm up, not work out.

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