Ever see someone at the gym always working out their biceps, and nothing else? That is hardly functional. Functional training involves working out multiple body parts simultaneously, making the body “functional” in everyday life. Big biceps might look nice, but seriously, how often does someone use only their biceps to get something done, other than to flex impress.
The American Council on Exercise recently did a study on the benefits of functional training on overall fitness. In it, they determined that “Those who went through the functional fitness training, showed greater physical improvements than those who did not. Improvements were seen in lower-body strength (13% improvement), upper-body strength (14%), cardiorespiratory endurance (7%), agility/dynamic balance (13%) and shoulder flexibility (43%).”
Looking good is one thing. Feeling good is another. But actually functioning well comes from a type of training that should be incorporated into a program that will also ultimately lead to the looking and feeling parts.