The Best Exercises to Activate Muscles Before a Workout

Even if work-from-home life has left you with more time on your hands, we all still want our workouts to be effective and efficient. Unfortunately, they might not be either if you don’t activate muscles correctly.

“A muscle loses the ability to activate when the joint associated with it loses range of motion, strength, and control,” says Matt Pippin, C.S.C.S., a strength and mobility coach and co-founder of Pippin Performance. For instance, if you’ve lost range of motion in your hips, your glutes might not activate properly anymore.

That can lead to aches and tightness from other muscles taking over and controlling a motion, either during regular movement as you go about your day or mid-workout. Let’s say you’re doing hip thrusts but your glutes aren’t activating correctly; you might feel it more in your hamstrings and lower back instead. Or during squats, your quads might totally take the

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