The functional training craze has been around for years. Over the past decade, it has become a buzzword in most gyms, clinics, and academic institutions. Hundreds of studies suggest that athletes and older adults can expect quick benefits from functional fitness programs. The truth is that anyone can benefit from using this method. From greater aerobic endurance to muscle gains and fat loss, functional training can change the way you look and feel.
Many people perform functional exercises at the gym without knowing too much about their benefits. Wall push-ups, squats, overhead presses, lunges, and stair climbing play a key role in functional training. If you work out regularly, you have probably tried these exercises more than once. As part of a functional training program, these compound movements are designed to strengthen your core, improve your balance, and increase spine mobility. They basically train your body for the activities in daily life.
Functional exercises mimic everyday movements targeted at core muscles of the lower back and abdomen. Physical therapists are using them for helping patients with movement disorders regain their mobility and return to their lives after an injury. Athletes and fitness enthusiasts rely on functional training for building strength and endurance. This kind of workout helps build lean muscle, increases your mobility, and trains the nervous system to function optimally.
Fitness experts seem to agree that functional training is a better choice than weight lifting for improving strength, balance, endurance, and coordination. Most workouts are based on activities of daily living and include multi-joint exercises that target nearly all muscle groups. Functional training combines upper body and lower body movements through multiple planes of motion.
Doing functional exercises improve core stability, flexibility, and balance. Training with free weights and performing dynamic movements will improve your ability to control your own body weight and maintain good posture. Over time, your core muscles will get stronger. A weak core causes muscle imbalances and contributes to poor stability, which may increase your risk of injury. Thus, it’s important to strengthen these muscles.
Athletes, bodybuilders, and crossfitters are using functional training to break through plateaus and boost their overall performance. Whether you’re new to exercise or have years of training behind you, add functional exercises to your workout routine if you don’t already do them! It’s a great way to train your whole body and lower your risk of injury. A well planned functional training program can restore posture, dynamic stability, and muscle imbalances.
Many strength exercises put pressure on the spine on joints. Functional exercise does exactly the opposite. When it comes to conditioning, it’s not all about big muscles. A functional program can improve your fitness level, reduce back pain, and enhance joint flexibility. This kind of workout is beneficial for any age group or athletic level. After only a few weeks, you’ll see dramatic improvements in overall health and performance.