As being overweight has been a major cause of concern for many diseases, in such a case well-defined functional training is, therefore, preferable to meet all your weight loss concerns. Functional fitness workouts are the key to long-term fitness, weight loss, and wellness. These carefully designed sessions won’t leave you sweaty and breathless but they can help you to burn more calories and stay active throughout the day. With the help of this article, we will try to figure out some of the functional fitness workouts for weight loss.
What is Functional Fitness?
Functional training is a popular form of training based on movements that mimic those you do in your day-to-day life. Think of exercises similar to lifting and placing your bag into an aeroplane overhead compartment, doing laundry, or even carrying your grocery bags down the street. It was first created as a form of exercise by physical therapists and now is recognized as a safe and thorough way to work out your essential muscles. Most exercises include full-body, multi-plane movements that utilize several muscle groups at once. Since this requires more energy expenditure on your end, it also means you burn more calories, which is what you are aiming for when trying to lose weight.
For many exercisers, functional training is a workout for the muscles and the mind. It improves the way your brain talks to your muscles so your body works better. During each functional training exercise, you must focus closely on the movement to stay balanced and maintain good posture.
There are different ways to incorporate functional training into your regular workout routine. You can add a few postures and balance exercises into your weekly strength training sessions or you can work with a qualified trainer to build a more comprehensive program to improve the way your body looks and feels.
Benefits of Functional Fitness Workouts for Weight Loss
- Burns Calories – Functional training can help burn more calories when compared to traditional strength training. The body burns about 5 calories of energy to consume 1 litre of oxygen. While using more muscles during functional training, you are consuming more oxygen and burning more calories.
- Strengthens Multiple Muscles Groups – Functional training focuses on compound movements by engaging all parts of your body with better efficiency. The functional techniques are not isolated exercises such as a bicep curl where you would only be working your arm muscles. For example, when you correctly execute a plank exercise, you are strengthening your core and abs, arms, glutes and legs; improving your posture and alignment; and enhancing your endurance and stability. This exercise improves your overall strength in a limited amount of time and enhances your body’s capacity to work efficiently and effectively.
- Enhances Agility and Balance – Functional training promotes the use of your own body weight to perform various ranges of movements. Just like in the real world, there are no machines to support your body so you need to rely on your balance while coordinating your body through the movements. This allows your body to become more stable as it works against external forces. For example, a soccer player needs exceptional coordination, agility and balance to control the ball, pass and run while fighting off opponents and dealing with uneven surfaces. A person of an older age can benefit from adequate balance and coordination to avoid falls and injuries. Good control of coordination, agility and balance gives you a better-quality life.
- Injury Prevention – Functional training first began as a way to prevent and rehabilitate people after injuries. Functional exercises help keep your joints active and stable which promotes a better-quality life. One of the most common injuries in athletes and non-athletes is in the knees and ankles due to the inability to change direction quickly and deal with stress on the joint. By having functional training with good technique, using your own body as stabilisation and incorporating joint strengthening exercises throughout your workouts; your injury-prone areas can deal with high-impact movements that are needed in a game and in everyday tasks.
- Allows Flexibility and Mobility – Functional training involves a lot of movements that consequently require someone to incorporate their flexibility and mobility. Full body movements include loosening body parts such as the hips, chest and back; or stretching out the extremities to create space within your body. Your muscles will be creating and releasing tension through loosening and contracting. The flexibility and mobility element reduces the risk of injury and allows your body to move more freely during the movements of training and everyday life.
Best Functional Fitness Workouts for Weight Loss
1.) Lateral Lunge – Lateral Lunge is one of the best functional fitness workouts for weight loss. Start with your feet together. Step out to the left and bend your left knee into a lunge while keeping that right leg straight. Sink your left glute down towards the ground. Come back to the centre and then lunge over to the right side. Think of this as something you would do if you were moving groceries or other items from the back of your car to the ground.
2.) Axe Handle – Axe Handle is one of the best functional fitness workouts for weight loss. Grab a medicine ball or the handle of a free motion machine (with the weight of your choosing), for this move. Place your feet wide with the toes comfortably turned out. Start with the ball or handle in front of your right shoulder. As you rotate your torso down and to the left, use your core to bring the ball or handle down, across, and through a diagonal to your left hip. This is similar to the muscles you would use to put your aeroplane carry-on into an overhead bin.
3.) Transverse Lunge with an Overhead Press – Transverse Lunge with an Overhead Press is one of the best functional fitness workouts for weight loss. With a set of free weights racked steadily on your shoulders, step out in a diagonal towards the right in a lunge position. Push your way back to standing and press the weights up overhead. This one mimics the movement of placing something from the floor to the top shelf of your closet.
4.) Kettlebell Swings – Kettlebell Swings are one of the best functional fitness workouts for weight loss. Using a medium-weight kettlebell, stand with your feet apart and toes slightly turned out. Hold the kettlebell down in between your legs with your palms facing towards you. As you hinge your hips back, let the power of your hips, glutes, and abs thrust the kettlebell up and forward. Let it swing back in between your legs as you hinge your upper body forward. Try not to use your upper body or neck.
5.) Boxing – Boxing is one of the best functional fitness workouts for weight loss. While performing boxing the majority of the power comes from the core, thus those muscles which are ignored in other workouts, are hence used in boxing for strengthening purposes.
The information contained in this article is for educational and informational purposes only and is not intended as a health advice. We would ask you to consult a qualified professional or medical expert to gain additional knowledge before you choose to consume any product or perform any exercise.