What is Functional Fitness?

Functional fitness trains your muscles to work together and prepare them for daily tasks by simulating common movements you might do at home, at work or in sports. While using various muscles in the upper and lower body at the same time, functional fitness exercises also emphasise core stability.

For example, a squat is a functional exercise because it trains the muscles used when you rise up and down from a chair or pick up low objects. By training your muscles to work the way they do in everyday tasks, you prepare your body to perform well in a variety of common situations.

Functional fitness utilises a wide variety of gym equipment, as well as body weight movements such as pushups, situps, planks and squats.

Fuel Your Fire’s incorporates functional fitness into all class types. Some include high-intensity functional training – exercises may include aerobic exercises, body weight movements and weightlifting. Exercise tools, such as fitness balls, kettlebells and weights, are often used in functional fitness workouts.

What are the benefits of functional fitness training?

Functional exercises tend to use multiple joints and numerous muscles. Instead of only moving the elbows, for example, a functional exercise might involve the elbows, shoulders, spine, hips, knees and ankles. This type of training, properly applied, can make everyday activities easier, help reduce your risk of injury and improve your quality of life.

Functional exercise training may be especially beneficial as part of a comprehensive program for older adults to improve balance, agility and muscle strength, and reduce the risk of falls.