Athletics: What is Functional Fitness?
December 17, 2013
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How familiar are you with the latest gym buzz words?
If you keep up-to-date with these trends, then you may already know what “functional fitness” is. As a student athlete, it is important for you to know these terms. These trends can prove beneficial to you, especially in the off-season.
Learn more about functional fitness and how you can incorporate it into your training.
What is it?
According to freelance medical reporter Gina Shaw, functional fitness is a workout strategy that focuses “on building a body capable of doing real-life activities in real-life positions, not just lifting a certain amount of weight in an idealized posture created by a gym machine.”
Functional exercise emphasizes integration. In an interview with Shaw, Greg Roskopf, MS, says, “It’s about teaching all the muscles to work together rather than isolating them to work independently.”
Functional fitness can benefit athletes by making them more conscious of their workouts and their bodies in general. It is possible that applying functional fitness techniques to your workouts can make you less prone to injury, especially during your season.
Consider incorporating functional fitness training into your off-season training routine. Men’s Fitness offers a day-by-day exercise guide that can help male athletes adjust to the demands of functional fitness. Elizabeth Narins of Women’s Health Magazine offers tips for women who are interested in functional health as well. She provides a list of gym props that can be incorporated into female athlete routines to engage in more functional fitness.
If you’re interested in improving your functional fitness, talk to your athletic director or your team coach about off-season training techniques.