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If not, maybe you should.  Functional Training takes a comprehensive approach to training, reconditioning and rehabilitation as it pertains to your fitness.

Functional Training is shown to be the most effective way to build strength and LBM (Lean Body Mass) that translates directly into your life.  Functional Training is designed specifically to decrease body fat while increasing LBM, increase energy and endurance, and improve balance and flexibility.  Unlike traditional resistance training, with functional movements you will find very little bulk will be added to any single muscle because most muscles in the body are integrated into each movement, giving you a long-lean look.
  • 58% greater increase in strength over fixed isolated movements
  • 196% improvement in balance over fixed isolated movements
  • 30% greater reported lessening of joint pain
  • Up to 400% increase in calorie burn over fixed isolated movements depending on the exercises compared
So what is Functional Training?

Functional Training is a multi-planar, multi-dimensional, proprioceptively enriched exercise movement.  That means that you are in an unstable environment, like standing on 1 foot, and you move a weight through space at more than 1 angle and in more than 1 direction. 

Because of the complexity of the movement many muscles will be part of the motion and you will find that the weight that are able to move is relatively light compared to traditional weight training where you are in a stable environment and move a weight in a single plane with limited muscles.

The addition of all the muscles increases overall calorie burn and has a greater impact on you metabolic rate.  It also decreases the risk of overuse injury and tendon strain because of the light weight.

Disclaimer.  Functional Training is a highly effective way to exercise, but the movements tend to be more complex than traditional weight training.  In that complexity you will involve most muscles and joints in the body.  Make sure that you are with someone coached in these exercises before you try them to avoid the potential for injury.  Use a high degree of caution when starting out and do not worry much about the weight that you are lifting as it is far more important that you use proper form than a heavy weight.

Give this a try and then give us your feedback!

Robert Bumgarner
6/3/2010 07:18:17 am

Hmmm..... I like it. But functional training is simply put, "natural movement patterns, that can move large loads quickly over a long distance". Such as; Deadlifts, squats, lunges, presses, pulls, etc. Functional training is not labeled "unstable surface training over multi-planar and multi-dimensions..:" You will burn more calories incorporating more muscles into any given movement, but a exercise can be "functional" without standing on a bosu ball ;) Deadlifts are "functional" even if your on two feet and a solid surface !!!!


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