5-step Warm Up Process

Whether you’re warming up for a workout or or you’re getting in the zone for a race, follow these five steps to wake up the brain and get your body ready.

It’s important to remember that we all have different body structures and different movements feel better or worse. Explore movements within each pattern to find ones that work best for you.

1. Diaphramatically Breathe – Your diaphragm is a spinal stabilizer. When your spine feels safe, it lets the rest of your body move well. Breathing also calms the nervous system.
Start by closing your lips and placing your tongue on the roof of your mouth so that you are nasal breathing. The tongue placement is very important. The roof of your mouth has neural receptors that toggle the autonomic nervous system. Belly breathe so you pull air into the bottom of your lungs with your diaphragm.
Continue to nasal breathe throughout your entire warm up.
Breathing Progressions

2. Head Control – As the old adage goes, “Wherever the head goes. the body goes.” This is very true! Every muscle and reflex in the body is purposefully connected to the head, specifically the vestibular system. The VS is your balance and sensory information crossroads. The body is designed to protect the head and spine at all costs! So, if your head and neck doesn’t move well, the rest of our body won’t either.
Choose several head movements that will explore the full range of motion of the neck. Start by going up and down, and side to side. Lead with the eyes.

Head Control Progressions

3. Rolling or Rotation – Rolling and/or rotating further activates the VS and strengthens it. As we move down your body through this process, we are now connecting and warming up the shoulders and hips. This also nourishes and lubricates the vertebrae in the spine allowing you to move fluidly.
Choose movements here that target the thoracic spine (middle part of your back).

Upper and Lower Body Rolling

Frog Roll

Egg Roll

Rocking Chair

Thoracic Rotations

Shoulder Rotations

Windshield Wipers

4. Rocking – Rocking continues to nourish the VS and integrates all the joints in in the body. It also calms the body and improves posture.
Explore different directional movements like, back and forth, in circles, with one leg out beside or behind you, etc.

Quadruped Rocking

Kick Stand Rocking

Hamstring Rocking

5. Crawling or Gait Pattern – You guessed it, yes, crawling, walking, and marching continues to feed good information to the VS. It also connects the two halves of the brain to increase our coordination.
These movements may sound easy, but throw in different directions. Walk backwards and sideways! Also cross your midline with some marching cross crawls by touching your knee with your hand or elbow. If you’re preparing for a race, you may throw in a few sprints to top off your warm up.

Bird Dog

Dead Bug

Axis Crawl

Leopard Crawl

Monkey Crawl

Bear Crawl

As you can tell, this process is intimately connected to the nervous system. As a word of caution, never move into pain. That’s bad information and the body will tighten up to protect itself. When your nervous system gets good information, you feel good. And when you feel good, you move good.

Good luck! 👊

Science Class Just Became Cool

Triathlete Anatomy Web Series

Dr. Evan Kahn of North State Sport and Spine will hold 4 webinars this year via Zoom to discuss the major muscle groups we use during multisport events, in particular, how muscle chains work together and how you can get the most out of your body! He’ll also discuss how to strengthen these muscles, how to prevent injury, and what can be done if you have a small niggle or big injury. 

Four-part series

All Zoom events are from 7 – 8 PM

April 18 – Swimming

June 13 – Cycling 

August 22 – Running

October 10 – Strength Training

Sports & Recovery Bodywork Clinic

Eddie Summers of Body Restoration Massage & Bodywork will hold 4 in-person seminars at his clinic in Holly Springs to discuss and demonstrate what you can do at home to safely work your muscles to increase mobility, reduce inflammation, release toxins, improve circulation, and much more! 

Four-part series

All Semiars are from 7 – 8 PM

March 27 – Shoulders & Neck

May 15 – Torso & Arms

June 26 – Hips & Knees

July 31 – Calves, Ankles, & Feet

Share these events

Meet the Ladies at Prevail Physical Therapy

Dr. Kari Smith, PT, DPT, Certified Dry needling

Founder, Owner

Physical Therapist

As an athlete and running enthusiast, Kari combines her sports experience with physical therapy expertise to help her patients achieve peak performance.

Dr. Jenny Lennon, PT, DPT

Physical Therapist

Jenny’s primary goal of treatment is to guide her patients toward independence with self-care and symptom management by teaching them the proper tools and exercises. 

Certified dry needling & pelvic floor specialist

Laura Hudak, PT, MPT,

Physical Therapist

Laura loves being able to teach people more about how their body works, and how to best take care of it in the short and long term. Treating the whole person is the cornerstone of her philosophy.

Mckenzie specialist & mechanical diagnosis

I’m excited to announce our newest sponsor, Prevail Physical Therapy and Sports Performance. They provide comprehensive, evidence-based care, utilizing a one-on-one, hands-on approach without the use of aides or assistants. They work with patients to optimize functional movement and sports performance by determining the root cause of injury. They then develop a plan of care to achieve wellness, reduce future injury risk and redefine performance.

Your Carolina Multisports membership includes a complimentary 30 min. sports performance review with Dr. Kari Smith. Take this opportunity to discuss your questions with a professional before training.

Team Health Specialist

For the 2023 season, Dr. Evan Kahn of North State Sport and Spine proudly serves as the offical Carolina Multisports team health specialist and focuses on injury management to keep you training and focused on your goals.

Anytime throughout your training experience as a client, he offers a complimentary 30 min. injury assessment. Additional paid services may be recommended and include, but are not limited to, chiropractic, dry needling, taping, functional assessment, soft tissue mobilization, Normatec recovery, and more!

Monthly Coaching Services Include Even More!

Triathlon is one of the fastest-growing sports worldwide. There are races all over the world of different distances and formats. You can participate at any time of the year, and across any type of terrain as in winter or cross triathlon. Some athletes prefer only two sports at a time like duathlon, aqua bike, or aquathlon. And of course, single sports like a marathon, grand fondo rides, or an open water swim event are just as challenging. There is an event for everyone!

Juggling three sports can be a challenge. The 2023 season is upon us and I’m here to help. Carolina Multisports provides a community that you are immediately plugged into for support. I’ve been working hard all winter to deliver even more value for your monthly training membership. I’m excited to announce several exclusive new services only offered to Carolina Multisports athletes.

Monthly coaching services now include:

  • Complimentary injury assessment at North State Sport & Spine 
  • Complimentary sports performance review at Prevail Physical Therapy
  • Complimentary gait analysis at The Running PTs (Cary or Holly Springs)
  • Complimentary 30 min. bodywork massage at Body Restoration
  • Nutrition Guide from The Endurance Edge

I hope you’ll choose Carolina Multisports for your training and coaching needs. Feel free to contact me anytime. Your questions are very important to me. In the meantime, take some time to learn more about my coaching philosophy, check out our upcoming events, or browse our latest newsletter articles.

Let’s get started!

Bringing Camp to You

This week, as part of my weekly Triathlon Training Tips post, I invite you to join us at our 2022 Fall Training Camp during two FREE break-out sessions via Zoom.

Everyone who logs into at least one session will be entered to win a 30 min. massage by Eddie Summers, of Body Restoration Massage & Bodywork. The drawing will be done Saturday after the last session.



Learn more about the unique nutritional needs of endurance athletes during training, racing, and recovery with Chris Newport, MS, RDN, LDN, EP, CISSN.

Friday, Nov. 4
1:30 PM – 2:10 PM

Learn more about The Endurance Edge.



Learn more about how the demands of endurance sports affect the body and what to do with Sports Medicine Chiropractor Dr. Evan Kahn, DC, DACBSP.

Saturday, Nov. 5
11:30 AM – 12:10 PM

Learn more about North State Sport and Spine.  

Avoid the Ironman Shuffle.

As triathletes, our mode of travel is forward and very repetitive. Therefore, we are usually very strong in this plane. However, we are typically very weak in the sagittal plane or side-to-side plane.

During a triathlon, have you experienced or ever noticed someone leaning to one side during the run? The glute med is very weak in this example, allowing the hip to drop, therefore, leaning the body over. This weakness forces other muscles to compensate, leading to excessive fatigue and then on to potential injury as running form degrades.

Add these simple exercises to your strength routine. Do a few sets on each side, increasing time and reps as you get stronger. This winter, you could also throw in some sports that break up the training routine and exercise the sagittal plane like basketball, pickle ball, indoor soccer, etc.

Good luck!

Sculling Swimming Drills

Increase your speed by improving your feel of the water

There are 4 sculling drills included in this video:

Top Scull: This drill helps you feel the water at the setup phase of the stroke. Imagine piling up two mounds of sand in front of you.

Mid Scull: This drill helps you feel the water in the push phase of the stroke. Make sure your elbows are in front of you so you can see them in your peripheral vision. Think angles.

Rear Scull: This drill helps you feel the water at the exit phase of the stroke. Make sure you don’t recover your hand too early by twisting your hand. Keep your hand against the water until your fingertips come out of the water. Imagine rolling a ball behind you.

Sculling on Your Back: Change it up by going on your back. You can go forwards or backward. This is an excellent core exercise too.

For all of these drills, make sure your body position is level with the surface of the water. Use a buoy or kick board between your legs for added buoyancy if needed until you develop the correct form.