What does it mean to be physically “fit”? Is it the ability to run a long distance or lift heavy weights at the gym?
If we look at the definition of physical fitness “A set of attributes that people have or achieve that relates to the ability to perform physical activity” we realise that it goes beyond what kind of activity you do, how long you do it, or at what level of intensity. These measures of fitness exist and are important but they address only single areas.
Overall fitness is made up of five main components:
- Cardio respiratory endurance – The ability of the body’s circulatory and respiratory systems to supply fuel during sustained physical activity. Activities that improve this aspect include those that keep the heart rate elevated at a safe level for a sustained length of time.
- Muscular strength- The ability of the muscle to exert force during an activity.
- Muscular endurance – The ability of the muscle to continue to perform without fatigue.
- Body composition – This refers to the relative amount of muscle, fat, bone, and other vital parts of the body. A person’s total body weight (what you see on the bathroom scale) may not change over time. But the bathroom scale does not assess how much of that body weight is fat and how much is lean mass (muscle, bone, tendons, and ligaments). Body composition is important to consider for health and managing your weight.
- Flexibility – The range of motion around a joint. Good flexibility in the joints can help prevent injuries through all stages of life.
Our daily lives while being primarily sedentary still require that we move and function in a manner that is similar to those required by our predecessors who were hunters and gatherers. While our childhood years probably incorporated ample jumping, running, skipping and other forms of physical exercise, as adults we need to consciously aim to perform movements that will prepare us to meet and deal effectively with the challenges of everyday living. Functional fitness workouts prepare your body to perform daily activities like walking, lifting, bending, and climbing without injury, discomfort or pain.
Functional training workouts focus on building a body that is able to take on activities in the real world with routines that involve Kickboxing, Endurance training, High intensity interval training (HIIT), Core training, Strength and Conditioning drills and Agility training.