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What is functional training?
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Functional training is a term that's been around now for going probably 10 years and it's just another term for what is going to allow you to be able to do your daily routines without pain and without pain as effectively and efficiently as possible. That's functional training. In regards to athletic performance, functional training would be taking an athlete and allowing them to do their best effort in as least resistance as possible. So if we take a golfer and we want to apply functional training, we're going to advice certain of resistive exercises û maybe through dumbbells, maybe through barbells, maybe through power sticks weighted type medicine balls, maybe through cable work to elicit and identify movements that are going to be related to what they do. For the average human being, functional training would be something that you do on a daily basis. If it's climbing upstairs, we want to be able to mimic that. If it's carrying luggage, we want to be able to somehow identify and replicate something of that movement. When it comes down to occupational type things û those are the things that functional training is most the effective for. There are just normal people who aren't professional athletes like waiters and waitresses, who ought to be doing functional training at the gym. Meaning they ought to be concentrating on those joints and the muscle groups of what they're going to be using during their occupation. If they think that way, they're going to be more efficient, they're going to have less workers' comp claims and they're going to have less injuries. We tend to see carpal tunnel as a major factor in waiters and waitresses because they're carrying 40, 50, 60 pound plates on their wrists and their wrists were never trained to carry that kind of load. And with that load as a repetitive type of motion û over and over and over again, then, over time, if you ever watch waiters and waitresses who haven't been doing their functional training, they'll put their trays in a place on their shoulder. So not only are they having wrist and elbow problems, now they're having shoulder problems. What people ought to look at is, what do I do on a regular basis and what should I be doing to incorporate certain exercises to maintain that? So on the job, if you sit behind a desk and that's your job for 6-8 hours to sit behind desk, then you ought to be working on things that involve the shoulder, things that involve the upper back, things that involve the lower back û because these things that û its pretty obvious that when you sit in a chair, things start to ache, and things start to cause pain within a period of time and your able to withhold and withstand and tolerate these pains if you strengthen these muscles groups in the off time at the gym, in the fitness facilities û that truly is functional training. When we're taking a certain type of workout routine and your taking any type of protocol and you're using so, therefore, you'll be efficient in terms of whatever you're doing outside the gym - that's functional training.
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