Elite Warmup Protocol for Basketballers

Warmup 2.0
The best warmup to increase your running speed, vertical leap, and long-term athletic development.
Example H2
Example H3

Get more from your warmup time

If you are a basketballer I bet you want to become better, faster, more explosive, and more durable. If you are a coach, I’m certain you want to be able to enhance the athletic performance and robustness of your whole team.

There is a massive opportunity just waiting for you in your warmup time.

We like to say “start at the start”.

That means implementing a high-performance mentality at the beginning of every training session or game with a warmup protocol designed to support your specific goals.

The great news is that by “starting at the start” and mastering the fundamentals of elite warmups you can make a huge impact on both short and long-term athletic development.

We call this “Warmup 2.0” because it is such an improvement on the stock-standard warmups most athletes and teams have done in the past.

Implement Warmup 2.0 to make sure your team will jump higher, move better, and recover quicker this season.

Why we made Warmup 2.0

I became obsessed with developing the best basketball warmup back in 2006 when I was appointed as High Performance Manager for the Australian Sapphires World Championship campaign.

The players were spread out through the US college system, various WNBL teams, and the AIS, so I needed a universal warmup that could keep them injury free, but also slowly prepare them for the upcoming rigours of a world cup campaign.

I got a tonne of great feedback and help refining the protocol with awesome athletes on the squad like Jenna O’Hea and Cayla George.

Old-school warmups have a simple goal: prepare muscles and elevate body temperature. I knew we could get more from the time spent warming up.

My goal was something that made the athletes a tiny bit better at sprinting, jumping, landing and cutting every session. I also knew a bit of prehab by rolling and stretching some tight muscles would be essential due to their significant playing and training commitments.

I remember the team hated the warmup to begin with - 19 year old Cayla George was throwing daggers my way when I made them roll during the selection camp! Over time the whole team came to love it as they noticed our incredibly low injury rate and improved soreness levels.

Happily the team won silver at the World Championship in 2007, being undefeated except against the USA.

Following this successful experiment we implemented a shorter more refined version with Basketball Victoria, as well as the Deakin Melbourne Boomers while I was HPM there.

Over 16 years later Warmup 2.0 has gotten shorter, sharper, and even more specific to basketball performance. We now use the protocol with the BV High Performance Program, the Nunawading Spectres, Mackinnon Cougars, the Eltham College Emerging Athlete Program, and in-house at the Core Advantage High Performance Centre.

I still cop daggers when athletes are introduced to the rolling and stretching component, but it only takes a couple of weeks before they love it!

Warmup 2.0 instructions

(Note: You will find full instructions in our downloadable PDF guide and the videos on this page.)

Very simply the warmup consists of four distinct phases:

  1. Foam rolling for soft tissue quality
  2. Targeted stretching to restore length at key “handbrake” muscles
  3. Activation training to fire up the glutes
  4. Dynamic movement skill training to enhance your expression of speed and power

PDF download

We have a handy quick guide PDF for you to grab that outlines all the steps of the protocol.

Download the PDF here.

Video instructions

Below is a full instructional video for the entire warmup.

Phase-by-phase videos

If you are short on time, or need a quick refresher on specific parts of the protocol, each phase of the protocol is also available in shorter videos as well.

Phase 1: Foam rolling

Phase 2: Stretching

Phase 3: Activation

Phase 4: Dynamic movement skill

Critical tips

To get the most from Warmup 2.0 make sure you follow the tips below.

  • Do it in the right order
    16 years of refining have resulted in a protocol that works, maximising impact and minimising the time-cost. So follow the recipe! The magic of the warmup is the synergistic relationship between the phases, and the sequencing matters.
  • Start gently, do it often
    It’s critical to gently build up the intensity of each phase. Never demand flexibility while stretching, gently request it. Do every phase within your capacity so the body can adapt to the new movements and positions.
  • Pay attention to the details
    Foot position, knee angle, stance, and everything mentioned in the videos matters. Aim for precision every time with an elite mindset to make sure you are grooving the right patterns and not reinforcing the wrong ones.

More help

At Core Advantage we work with teams to help them implement high performance tailored for their club.

Get in touch with us via our Contact page if you could use some help!