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Navigate: FAQ Home Page > Sports & Exercise > Warming up for exercise
I am a triathlete and swimmer competing on a national level so I'd be happy to answer your question. If you notice in professional competitions you may watch on TV or events you have attended, or the Olympics , the athletes routinely are out on the field warming up. One of the most important things they are trying to avoid is cramping up during the competition. You may have seen this somtime at the Olympics when a runner will go down in alot of pain. Of course that is the end of the race for him. The second thing they know is that their performance is better after stretching. They might win. Cooling down serves the same purpose and allows for faster recovery and quality during the next workout.
The broader and more specific question about how to do that would take a long time, pages,to go over, so I will recommend you to the coach in your sport, magazines in your sport, and short books on the subject. Stretching, by Anderson, is a classic.
William Page , M.D.