Functional training has earned high praise recently for its ability to help people of all ages and fitness level reach their own unique goals—whether that means running a marathon or walking up the stairs.
However, without some prior insight, people seeking a full-fledged functional training routine may be perplexed by how different this routine can be. Here are some tips.
Most exercise equipment has a ‛base’ that allows the user to orient themselves and know how to move with the machine – a seat, a tread, steps – something. As a result, many new users instinctively feel relaxed and at ease on more traditional cable-based systems.
Functional training machines, on the other hand, can be disorienting—since they lack this sort of base. For maximum impact, functional trainers require a solid knowledge of the pulley systems, weight stacks, and proper positioning. With a clear center seat from which most exercises are based, the TuffStuff RSM 625WS is a good machine for beginners to functional training. The award-winning Cybex Bravo system provides even more functional training options. For best results, users should be familiar with how to position themselves in regards to the pulleys in order to have an effective and safe workout.
The Personal Trainer to the Rescue
A personal trainer with functional training experience (and, importantly, familiarity with the specific machine in question) can help the new user first become familiar with every aspect of the machine, and then construct specific workout routines built around the capabilities of the machine and with the principles of functional training in mind. This sort of one-on-one, personalized workout creation can make the functional training machine live up to its potential and save the user from injury – or simple disappointment.
However, that makes functional training machines that much more complex than other kinds of equipment. Where a multi-gym system might require a day’s introduction from a trainer – or no introduction at all if the user is familiar – a functional training machine might require slightly longer for a user to feel his or her ‘comfort zone.’
Effective functional training can result in improved joint mobility, better joint stability, and even improved motor skills – but only if pursued with correct form and complete knowledge of the functional fitness equipment being used. If you have questions about functional fitness equipment, Gym Source can help.