Most of us that have been practicing karate for any length of time have seen some real stinkers of warm up routines. Routines that may have made sense to physical education instructors in the 1940’s and 50’s have for some reason been exempted from reexamination as regards to karate training. The bunny hops, pre-training splits, hurdler’s stretches, and reverse butterflies still practiced in many dojo as warm ups can do more harm than good. Most contemporary fitness professionals eschew static stretches, prior to intense activity, in favor of dynamic/active warm up routines. Considering that karate practice can involve rapid changes in direction, rapid loading of the body for lifts, falling at a moments notice, impact, and joint locking and twisting techniques, we should take great care to make sure our warm up routines are actually helping. Here are a few videos of more contemporary dynamic/active warm up routines that may spark some new ideas for you.