Eat healthy. Exercise. Drink plenty of water. Get adequate rest. These are all key components for weight loss. Though the science behind weight loss is a simple concept, implementing the tactics that are required can be complicated.
While many of us view running, walking, or aerobics as optimal methods of exercise, not all physical activity is created equal. Four main types of exercise exist: 1)Aerobic exercise, 2)Anaerobic Exercise, 3)Flexibility, and 4)Muscular Strength and Endurance. All of these types of fitness are essential for overall health. However, certain types of often focused on more than others.
Functional fitness is a combination of all of the aforementioned types of exercise. In fact, many of us have been unknowingly involved in functional fitness at some point in our lives. This type of fitness facilitates better posture, balance, muscular endurance, and flexibility. Therefore, it is essential for long-term weight loss and endurance.
4 of the Top Exercises for Functional Fitness
1. Wall Handstand Push-Up
You may have seen a rendition of this move in your local CrossFit Gym or during the CrossFit Gyms on television. Though some prefer to do a free-standing version of this exercise, performing it up against a wall helps with form and balance maintenance.
To perform this move, begin by simply standing with your back to a wall. Bend over and place your hands shoulder-width apart, kicking each leg up individually until you are in the handstand position. Beginners may have to have a partner help them assume the proper position and spot them while they learn the positioning. While looking straight ahead, slowly and steadily lower both elbows as much as you can without losing control. Press back up to the starting position, while keeping your core engaged.
2. Standard Pull-Up
This move isn't just for the high school gym class. This oldie but goodie move is a challenging motion that uses your entire body weight for conditioning. It also works one of the largest, most essential parts of your body: the back.
Taking a wide grip on a pull-up bar, grasp with both hands and slowly lower your body to a hanging position. Lock your ankles together behind you, pull both elbows in and down, and slowly use your arms to lift the entire body up towards the bar. Pull upward until your chin reaches or exceeds the level of the bar, lower your body, and repeat. This move can be made easier by limiting your range of movement or using counter weight until you can do a full pull-up.
3. Sled Pull/Push
You may have seen a rendition of this move on The Biggest Loser or in the Crossfit Games, but you typically don't see people performing it in your local gym. Since pushing and pulling are intrinsically natural human movements, the sled push/pull is based on a very comfortable motion. However, when you add the weight of a sled this move becomes an instant fat burner.
This move is performed by attaching a rope to the end of a weighted sled. Walk to the end of the rope, take a squat stance, and begin pulling the sled until it reaches the area in front of your feet. After this exercise is completed, begin pushing the sled back to the starting position. The sled push/pull works virtually every muscle in the body in one high-intensity movement.
4. Kettlebell Snatch
Any move that involves a kettlebell is possible to do, virtually anywhere. The kettlebell snatch requires just one piece of equipment that can be easily transported: a kettlebell, of course.
This move is so dynamic, because it focuses on just one limb at a time. Ordinarily, when moves are performed with both limbs the stronger appendage will take on most of the weight, creating an imbalance in the body. A functional movement that focuses on unilateral strength is the perfect remedy for this problem.
To perform this exercise, stand behind a kettlebell with your feet shoulder-width apart. Keep the chest lifted and squat down to pick up the kettlebell with one hand. In one fluid movement, swiftly bring the kettlebell up to your chest. As soon as it becomes almost weightless, flip the kettlebell to the backside of your wrist and punch upward towards the ceiling. Complete the move with the arm extended directly over the shoulder with the weight up towards the ceiling. Reverse the move to lower the weight back towards the ground.
Where Do You Begin?
By reading through these moves, you may have determined that they seem too difficult for beginners or that you need to build more strength to be able to perform them regularly.
Seeking help from a professional who is certified in personal training can help you become more comfortable with these types of moves. It can also help you learn proper form under the guidance of a trained professional. Safety is always of utmost importance, so investing in personal training sessions can build your confidence correct movements and injury prevention tactics.
Another way to build up endurance and stamina for functional movements is to practice performing them in group fitness classes. Group fitness classes can allow you to obtain guidance from a trained professional while in the company of other individuals who are learning, just like you. They are often available at a fraction of the cost of personal training, but scheduling may not be as flexible as what you would achieve with a personal trainer.
Who Can You Contact?
We havethe best resources for functional exercises through group training or individual sessions at Personal Fitness and Group Training New Jersey. Whether you are looking to lose weight or focus on specific sports-related fitness, we have it all. Every potential client receives a free trial group fitness class so you can get the full class experience before have to make any decisions! If that isn't customer service, I don't know what is. Call 732-585-1830 to schedule your free class today!
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