What is functional strength Training?
Functional strength training is simply training that one does in order to increase his or her overall body strength. Training to improve functional strength involves more than simply increasing the force-producing potential of a muscle or group of muscles. Instead, it requires training to enhance the coordinated working group consisting of both the nervous and muscular systems.
Functional strength training involves working against resistance so that your strength enhances the performance of movements, enabling an individual’s daily or athletic activities easier to perform. The main goal of functional training is to transfer the increase in strength achieved in one movement to the performance of another movement by affecting the entire neuromuscular system. For example, when performing squats, you will increase the strength in your legs, as well as your abs. This is because your abs are being used to stabilize your legs.Â
Top 5 All Time Functional Strength Training Exercises
- Squats. Squats are arguably the main weight training exercise that one can do. You work out most of theÂ main muscles in your body! These muscle groups include the glutes, quadriceps, hamstrings, back and core. Being a functional strength exercise, the squat forces you to start lifting items by using your legs, not your back. Using your back can cause serious injury, believe me. To perform the squat, place your feet a couple inches wider than shoulder-width apart, and lower your hips until your thighs are parallel to the ground. Keep your feet flat on the floor, your back arched and chest up throughout the range of motion.
- Deadlifts. Many bodybuilders and athletes consider deadlifts to be one of the most essential functional weight training exercises. The deadlift will improve your running, jumping and throwing ability, by teaching you how to properly lift. The deadlift increases strength in the legs, hips, back, core and arms. Place your feet under your hips, and your hands just outside your legs. Keep the bar close to the body as you lift the weight from the floor. Throughout the exercise, keep your abs tense, feet flat and chest up.
- Walking Lunges.Â Lunges are a functional weight training exercise that will improve the way you walk & run by strengthening the back, shoulders, legs and arms. Lunges significantly increase lower body strength and flexibility. In order to do a walking lunge, step one foot forward and keep the front foot flat on the floor, as you lower your hips until the front knee is over the ankle. Push up slowly with the front foot to the beginning position. Then, continue with another step with the opposite foot and keep repeating this process.
- Power Cleans.Â More power means more strength.Â If you are looking for a weight lifting routine that helps to build stamina, strength, and power quickly, then look no further than the power clean. Over time, you can build more strength and speed, which equates to a lot more power.Â The Clean starts in a position similar as for theÂ Deadlift. Start the Clean from the floor with the barbell by pulling it on your shoulders. Catch the bar in theFront SquatÂ starting position. Note:Â Hips don’t come lower than parallel. You need to pull the bar higher & accelerate as much as you can.
- Bench Press. Â You’ll find many people who will argue that the bench press is not a good functional strength exercise. But you can present the fact that strength is strength and if you can apply it to a task then it in turn is functional strength. However The bench press requires very little expertise and can be utilized by beginners for rapid mass & strength gain. Because of this I have included the BP in my top 5 functional strength exercises. Beasically find a flat bench and with you grip shoulder width apart, slowly lower the bar to your chest and push it up slightly quicker than you lowered it. To maximize your results with the bench press lower the weight over 4 seconds and return it to the starting position in 2 second. So, as you lower it count 1,2,3,4 and when coming up it should be 1,2 Simple enough, right?Â
Alright insiders, that’s it for this one. As always, if you found this article beneficial or if you just want to say hello, drop me a line in the comments section below.
To your fitness success,