Do you live to exercise? Unless you are an athlete, you probably answered no to that question. Most people are simply looking to improve their quality of life and would likely say that they exercise to live. And that is the focus of Functional Strength Training – to develop a foundation of strength and mobility within the body so that it may accomplish daily activities more easily.
What is Functional Strength Training?
Functional Strength Training exercises are designed to train and develop your muscles to make it easier and safer to perform everyday activities, such as carrying groceries, picking objects up off the ground, or playing a pick-up game of basketball. A typical workout will incorporate various movements using muscles from the upper and lower body, as well as everything in between.
What is an example of a Functional Strength Training movement?
Functional exercises tend to be multi-joint, multi-muscle movements.
A squat is a functional strength exercise because it trains the muscles used when you rise up and down from a chair or pick up low objects. You can see that it is both multi-joint and multi-muscle; incorporating the joints of the ankles, knees and hips, and the muscles such as the quadriceps and gluteal muscles. By training your muscles to work the way they do in everyday tasks, you prepare your body to perform well in a variety of tasks.
What are the benefits?
The benefits are multifaceted. Functional Strength Training, properly applied, will allow for a better quality of life by making everyday activities easier. With an increase in muscular strength, your body will become more functionally sound leading to improvements in balance, agility and help reduce the risk of falls.
Is Functional Strength Training for everyone?
Yes! Functional Strength Training is for everyone, as it can be adapted to any fitness level. If you are just starting out, you may only need to use your own body weight for resistance. As you become more fit and ready for more of a challenge, you can progress to using weights as your primary form of resistance.
What is the payoff?
As you add more functional strength exercises to your workout, you should see improvements in your ability to perform your everyday activities, and, thus in your quality of life. That is quite a return on your exercise investment.
For more information on how you can get started with a Functional Strength Training routine please contact: Stay Strong | Strength & Conditioning today!