What is the REAL difference? I mean, is there anything significantly different from bodybuilding to functional training? Are a lot of people right in that the only difference is the names used?
While some believe that functional training is reflected in the crazier the exercise, it really stems from understanding how the body works. Not just a muscle, but how muscles work together to create movement.
What do I mean? While many respected functional training coaches have good intentions, they tend to look at how one muscle works at a time. A great example was the last time Tiger Woods hurt his back it came out that a well known coach said, “he wasn’t activating his glutes!” This got a lot of attention even in the mainstream.
While many debated what this meant, others laughed at the idea, to me the statement was not silly, but was vague. Okay, it is very possible that his glutes weren’t working, that probably would negatively impact his back, but here is the bigger question, WHY weren’t his glutes working?
Even in functional training we like to think that if we just “activate” a muscle then everything magically solves itself. However, the bigger question is why a muscle has decided not to work. Is it simply a strength issue? Do we just have to target it better?
Some of the many DVRT Ultimate Sandbag Training drills that teach the body how to work smarter!
Where I think DVRT Ultimate Sandbag Training really differs from a lot of other functional fitness programs is that we try to look at the body as a whole, always! A great example is how we progress our core training. Most people love planks and rightfully so, planks are a great starting point for most people. Yet, a lot of trainers don’t know how to progress what we learn in the plank into more functional exercises.
In fact, researchers have said, “currently, plank exercises are considered an adequate method of training the core for athletes to improve core strength and stability. This is a problem because it puts the athletes in a nonfunctional static position that is very rarely replicated in the demands of sport-related activities. The core is the center of most kinetic chains in the body and should be trained accordingly.”
Good core strength means being able to hold posture and alignment during motion. That is why a good core exercise means progressively challenging this concept. A fantastic example as well as a progressive exercise is the Half Around the World Lunge.
While this exercise looks cool, it has a TON of meaning behind it. For one, it challenges our ability to stabilize our trunk while the weight of the Ultimate Sandbag works our core in 360 degrees. That means we can just create high levels of tension, but learn how to quickly tense and relax different segments of our trunk.
We have the asymmetrical loading of our body in the lunge position which strengthens not only our ability to RESIST motion, but also tie in our core with our lower body. Lastly, this represents our DVRT Ultimate Sandbag Training version of “lifts and chops” which therapists have used for decades to improve the efficiency of the nervous system. Whew, a lot of “stuff” right? All in all though looking to see how improve the way the body connects during movement.
The best part is that it is a fun and challenging exercise that makes your training not just harder, but also smarter! Try this DVRT Ultimate Sandbag Training exercise and see what we really mean by functional training!