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Warming up is essential to any class or dance activity.  Essentially, its purpose is to prepare the body for more strenuous activity.  In this case, DANCE!  It is also a good bond for the class/group at the beginning of each session.  If a pupil is late to class, it is essential that they warm-up before joining in with the class.  It is not an exercise that can be skipped to save time!


Warming up is the way in which we prepare the body safely for exercise and activity. 

  • Warming up increases the heart rate thus getting the body used to moving faster and doing more complex actions, allowing the blood to increase its rate around the body.
  • The rate of breathing is increased during a warm-up which helps prepare for the faster/complex movements.  
  • The swinging and flowing movements in a warm-up promote the flow of synovial fluid from the synovial membranes.  This fluid works as an oil and loosens the joints.  (Imagine the Tin Man from ‘The Wizard of Oz’ and how his joints are loosened by Dorothy using the oil can on him).
  • Warming up reduces the risk of/prevents injury.  If a dancer goes straight into strenuous activity they run the risk of pulling muscles through over stretching, performing advanced moves without letting the muscles prepare for it.  The same applies to joints, ligaments and tendons.


A warm-up should be followed by Breathing Exercises and General Limbering (Isolations to limber, stretch and strengthen).  

©Tricia A. Thompson



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