Hopefully we all know by now that there is a major shift in the different styles of fitness training these days. Some people believe it or not are still stuck in the past and spend all their time focusing on workouts using machines. Others have evolved their way of thinking and are getting much better results by doing so. They focus their time with functional training and are getting excellent results.
What is the real difference between these two types of training? The major difference between the two styles is simple, planes of motion. For the past 40-50 years most people trained in what is called the “sagittal” plane; this is everything in front of us, bicep curls, bench press, squats, lunges, etc. The problem with only training in this plane of motion is we forget about the stabilizing and rotating muscles. These are the muscles that help to prevent injuries, give us the true strength and stabilization we need to maximize our performance. A very interesting report I once read really stuck with me. It was reported from hospitals all across the USA that 70% of their recorded injuries were non contact. What does this mean? It means that these people are getting injured by motions such as bending over in the shower or getting groceries out of the trunk of their car. The injuries are typically low back and knees from eccentric spinal rotation. Lowering, bending and twisting!
So how do we rectify this problem? Simple, start training this way! Grab a medicine ball, lower, bend knees and rotate your body! This is functional training!! Yes we still need resistance training so let’s do our bench press on a stability ball, let’s do rotational lunges, bicep curls on a bosu ball! This is called maximizing your workout!