Functional training is a type of workout where you build strength, agility and stabilizing skills that will carry over into everyday life. For example, you will learn to lift weights in a way that helps you to tote a heavy bag, or do cardio so you can sprint to catch a bus.
Try these real-life exercise tips from Juan Carlos Santana, a trainer and expert on functional training:
1. Lift weights standing up. This forces your core (abdominal and back) muscles to work. A strong core helps you lift heavy loads without hurting your back.
2. Do real-life cardio. Set up a course with cones. Run to the first cone as fast as you can. Side-shuffle to the second. Walk backward to the third. Dash to the fourth. The payoff: You’ll be better able to dash after a zig-zagging toddler.
3. Rotate. Stand with feet shoulder-width apart, knees slightly bent. Hold a weight out in front of you and twist side to side, for better reaching and bending.
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