Five Health Reasons To Do Functional Fitness
You’re driving and get stopped at a red light. You’re thirsty and remember your water bottle is in the back seat. Being careful not to take your foot off the brake, you quickly wrench your back sideways and reach for your water bottle.
Pop. Followed by searing pain. You just threw your back out…
Has this happened to you? I think something similar has happened to all of us at some point in life. I’m here today to explain how you can keep it from happening again. It’s two words – “Functional Fitness.”
Although the term functional fitness might seem overused in the fitness industry today—ad nauseam—there’s a reason for it.
Here’s a quick explanation of what we mean by functional fitness: It’s a way of training that forces your muscles to work together, as opposed to in isolation. In other words, it mimics the way your body needs to move during day-to-day activities in life.
We’re not saying isolation strength training is a bad thing. Bodybuilding-style lifting is definitely going to help you gain strength. But that kind of strength doesn’t lead to fluid coordination in your movements, and it will likely only hinder your mobility if it’s all you’re doing.
Basically, through training functional movements, we’re trying to get you moving the way you were able to when you were a child or even a toddler.
Think about how easy it is for a baby to get down to the floor and stand up again, and to get down and stand up without using their hands. Or remember when you were a kid and going across the monkey bars was fun? But now you hang from a bar and your joints immediately ache?
That’s what we’re trying to eliminate. We’re trying to make playgrounds fun again for you, and the best way to do this is to practice in the gym what you’re going to see in life in a way that will make life feel easy, and more importantly fun, again.
#1 -Better for your joints
Training multi-joint, multi-muscle groups puts seriously less strain on your joints than isolation work. Again, this doesn’t mean you can’t also do isolation work, but isolation on its own is much harder on your joints. Functional movements, on the other hand, will help strengthen your joints. It will also help you steer clear from joint-related injuries, like arthritis, bursitis, and tendinitis.
#2 – Better for bone density
Osteoporosis and low bone bass are considered a public health threat in the U.S. today. Close to 44 million men and women above the age of 50 suffer from osteoporosis in the U.S. alone. Weight-bearing activities and strength training are particularly good for maintaining bone density to help fend off the dangers of losing bone mass as we age.
#3 – Better at protecting from acute injuries
The hypothetical reach for your water-bottle in the car situation is less likely to happen if your body is accustomed to moving like that on the regular. From lifting your hands over your head to pulling and pushing, to squatting, hinging and carrying, training functionally helps your body be OK with doing all of these things in the real world.
It means your back won’t be shocked when you lift a heavy suitcase onto a conveyer belt at the airport, or you reach over your head to put a heavy bowl away in the cupboard.
Like the saying goes, if you don’t use it, you’ll lose it…We’ll make sure you keep using it.
#4 – Better at the leisure activities
So you want to go hiking, skiing, swimming with your kids and grandkids, but you’re scared you won’t be able to keep up on the ski hill and will spend the day either feeling guilty because you’re holding them back or skiing alone.
What we do here will prepare you physically and build your confidence to not just go skiing with your grandkids, but to keep up with them!
#5 – Better at life
When you’re functionally fit, you won’t need to worry about getting too old to handle the stairs in your house. You’ll be able to help lift a couch to vacuum underneath it. Carrying groceries won’t ever be a concern. In short, we’ll help keep you out of assisted living and old age home situations.
It goes without saying, this means you’ll live a longer, and more importantly, happier and more fulfilling life.
Contact us about starting your functional fitness plan today!
Jill Thornton is a mother of two, wife, and gym owner. Her passion for helping others is infectious! She channels her passion for fitness from her athletic background as the co-owner at Cumming Strength and Fitness located just west of downtown Cumming. To learn more about Jill, click here.