Functional Exercise

I believe there should be a new trend in exercises using movements we use daily. Functional exercises train your body for real life and these are for everyone at any age.

Think about the following scenarios; putting a box in the closet by pushing the box over your head, pulling up a bag of softener salt close to your torso, bending to pick up a child or heavy objects off the ground. Choose exercises that will mimic those movements from our daily lives.

Many people hurt themselves by doing exercises that are not functional. We have all seen or even done this exercise: sitting at a weight machine you pull the weight only using your torso all while twisting and keeping your feet planted. This screams disc injury waiting to happen. The type of isolated weight training we do at a gym can strengthen muscle groups, but it doesn’t train your muscles to work together, that’s the key to functional exercise.

The first step can be to gain balance and control over your body weight. Try these to gain strength and balance:

Practice doing one legged squats. Balance on one leg and perform a standard squat.

Do step ups. Place one foot up on a chair, or step and stand up on one leg. Repeat 10 times each side.

Do push-ups or getting off the ground without using your hands.

Think about your exercise movements and make it functional.
Can I get an Amen?

Dr John Bouma