Movements such as standing up, picking up low objects, and opening doors seem to be simple and a part of our everyday activities. It is easy to take for granted these basic but essential motions that allow us to live a productive life. When we recognize how important it is to maintain healthy and fluid mobility, we can start appreciating the exercises used to strengthen our joints and muscles. Functional fitness is a perfect method of exercise that trains our muscles to help us accomplish everyday activities safely and efficiently.
By incorporating common movements that you might do on a regular basis, functional fitness trains your joints, tendons, and muscles. It concentrates on core stability by simultaneously using muscles in the upper and lower body.
For example, a lunge is a functional exercise because it works the muscles used when you sit down and stand up. By specifically building muscle memory in ways that reflect our everyday motions, we prepare our bodies for daily tasks. Another great functional exercise is a squat. It’s a great way to add another basic movement into your arsenal.
Ordinary routines such as yardwork, sports, and vacuuming will benefit from this tremendously. Older adults normally practice functional fitness more frequently than others, but it is a great method for anyone looking for a simple but effective workout.
Functional fitness is convenient because it can be practiced at the gym or in the comfort of your home. It is great with or without weights for resistance and is beneficial toward building flexibility. If you have any health problems or haven’t worked out in a while, it is important to ask your doctor before starting, but if you’re ever looking for a quick and practical workout, functional fitness may be for you!
The most important rule for yoga squats is to focus on your breathing. Deep and slow inhales will not only serve as key points of when to move within the exercise but will also improve mental relaxation by providing oxygen to the brain. The squatting motions are great for building stamina, lower body strength, and overall mobility. This functional training exercise is broken down into four different parts:
- With your hands elevated or extended for balance, squat down into a parallel squat; breathe out while doing so. Try to prevent bending your back as much as possible.
- Return to an elevated stance while lowering your arms and breathing in.
- Squat down again while raising your arms and breathing out.
- Return to a standing posture while lowering your arms and breathing in. Repeat this cycle for as many reps as possible. Remember that it is important to know your limits. Pace yourself.
Written by: Dominic Ligon