There is a long-standing debate over the effectiveness of a warm-up and stretch prior to exercise. It is human nature for certain factions of the health & fitness industry to break tradition and look for new or different ways of doing things which is great. However, I am staying old-school, sticking my flag in the stand and saying yes….it is always wise to do a warm-up and full-body stretch routine prior to exercise of any type. Why? Well, this weekend I did a sprint workout at the track with some friends and two of my buddies decided that they are now “hardcore” and have subscribed to doing “dynamic warm-ups” and no stretching instead of a traditional warm-up and stretch session. The result? One hardcore enthusiast pulled a Quad muscle and the other tweaked his Hamstring. Maybe it was all just coincidence but either way you choose to look at it, I will continue to do what the pros do when it comes to high level training….I thoroughly warm-up and stretch before I train and cool down and stretch after! I find it terribly hard to believe that a world-class track & field athlete or any kind of serious athlete that is required to perform intense sprinting, lifting or what have you…doesn’t warm-up and stretch thoroughly. There are obviously many different formats for dynamic warm up and stretch routines but in this specific scenario, I would suggest a complete warm-up session followed by a full-body stretch to prepare your body for exercise!