Functional Fitness, have you heard the term? It seems to becoming more popular in the media and fitness studios but what exactly does it mean and why do we need it? The Mayo Clinic describes Functional Fitness as:
Functional fitness exercises train your muscles to help you do everyday activities safely and efficiently.
Day 2 of Ageing Well in August was to Keep Moving. An important component of ageing well is keeping active and being able to carry out day to day tasks. Including this type of regular fitness routine s is vital for ageing well – the ability to be fit enough to walk up stairs without becoming breathless, carry groceries and an important one for me the ability to keep up with my grandchildren.
As we age, we lose flexibility, our balance can be affected and we can find normally daily activities more difficult to perform.
How to achieve functional fitness
Incorporating exercises that enhance the way we move by training the muscles to work together to simulate movements you might do at home, during sport or at work. Working muscles in the upper and lower body at the same time, improves core stability and prepares your body to work well in daily situations. For example,
- Squats train your muscles to enable you to sit and stand or bend down to pick up low objects.
- Lunges can help you perform activities such as vacuuming and yard work
- Bicep curls build muscle strength to enable you to lift and carry your groceries
Yoga, pilates, resistance exercises are all ways we can improve our functional fitness.
Why you need functional fitness to age well
Independence and improved quality of life
20-minute Sample Workout for Older Adults from Go4Life
DISCLAIMER: REMEMBER TO SEEK MEDICAL CLEARANCE BEFORE TRYING ANY NEW EXERCISE