Conventional muscle training without a doubt isolates our muscles altogether and provides great tone! It doesn’t however teach muscle groups to work together and carry out a task without difficulties. Muscle strength is different from muscle endurance in such a way that muscle strength is carried out by our body’s fast twitch fibres and endurance is carried out by slow twitch fibres. Functional fitness refers to the average muscle strength that may be needed and required by our body to perform daily tasks. You may be tight, toned, and ready to hit the beach in your new swimsuit but are you really ready to lift a 70 pound suitcase till your main door without pulling your back or neck? Functional fitness training requires us to refine as well as strengthen our bodies in a way that we become more effective when performing our everyday activities! It is highly important for us to refine and maintain our bodies in a way that is suitable enough to fulfil physical demands of our lifestyle!
Functional exercises not only condition our bodies to move around more efficiently but also help us to prevent more injuries.
Here are a few simple and everyday functional exercises that could prove to be useful:
- Place things overhead
When you’re placing your everyday households overhead you are not only using a singular muscle but you’re also making use of your glutes, abs, and quads. Practice carrying things over your head one step at a time, starting from books and empty boxes. It’s far more easy to carry heavy objects overhead than dragging them around using the force of your arms.
A lot of everyday activities require us to squat. These may include simple tasks such as lowering yourself onto a chair or sliding yourself into or out of the car. These movements may seem simple while we’re performing them absent minded but bending down in reality requires usage of core muscles of the body and adds strength towards lower abs and quadriceps. To strengthen muscles more and more, practice these movements on a daily basis as part of your routine.
- Rotating and Reaching
Rotating specifically requires us to use muscles such as the abs, obliques, quads and hip flexors. Do functional exercises such as the Dumbbell Chop-Grab a dumbbell and hold it with both hands above your shoulder, rotate your torso towards the right side and swing the dumbbell down to the outside of your left knee by rotating towards the left side. Repeat the same movements on the opposite side.
- Climb up the staircase
It’s great if you have a staircase at your house but in case you don’t, try your best to climb them elsewhere! Incorporate stairs in your functional fitness programme as this will help you keep your legs toned as well as conditioned. Climbing the stairs with a pair of bicep curlers can improve your ability to carry things up the stairs