Most players and coaches accept that a well-planned and proper warm-up is required before each competitive game.
The warm-up helps minimise risk of injury, prepares the mind and body for action and enables the team to start to work together before the kick off.
But, oddly, many teams spend half-time sitting down, allowing their bodies and muscles to cool, before the players walk onto the pitch and stand waiting for play to resume.
Why? Surely, if it’s critical to warm up before the first half of a game, it’s just as necessary to prepare properly for the start of the second half?
A sports science study in 2004, using players from the Danish Fourth Division, found players who performed a short warm-up routine at the end of the half-time break, benefitted compared to those who did nothing.
Raising muscle temperature enabled players to sprint better when play resumed, and the risks of injury were reduced.
It makes sense – so why don’t we all incorporate a short warm-up into our half-time break?
Mohr, M, Krustrup, P, Nybo, L, Nielsen, JJ and Bangsbo, B 2004. ‘Muscle temperature and sprint performance during soccer matches: beneficial effect of re-warm-up at half-time’, Scandinavian Journal of Medicine and Science in Sports, 14(3):56-62.