The Benefits of Functional Training for Sports Performance

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Pro trainer and ex-Super 15 rugby player Terry Jacob focuses on using functional training to help his clients reach their fitness goals. We take a closer look at the benefits of functional training and HIIT and how it can help boost sports performance.

Functional training has many benefits; not only does it improve overall sports performance, but it’s a great way to help you reach your unique fitness goals. This type of training is geared toward your specific needs, making it a great benefit for any individual – regardless of your fitness level. When practiced regularly, functional training it can increase balance and flexibility, allowing you to do everyday activities efficiently.

Regardless of the type of fitness training you are focusing on, functional training and HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training) can provide you with the boost you need to reach your goals. Pro trainer Terry Jacob focuses on using functional training to support his clients’ fitness and sport-specific goals, and with great success.

The Benefits of Functional Training

Functional training is excellent for beginners and pros alike. It emphasizes movements that focus on cardiovascular fitness, muscle endurance and fat loss, so theoretically it can help you to achieve just about anything.

Here are a few key benefits of functional training:

  • Improves flexibility. This type of training improves your core stability, mobility and flexibility. It helps you to improve your body in so many ways, including building overall strength, making it an excellent training method.
  • Essential for sport-specific training. Functional training enhances your body’s ability to perform quick, reactive and powerful movements that can be used in your specific sport or fitness goals.
  • It encourages fat loss. Functional training is excellent for fat loss as it incorporates so many different exercises and can be adjusted to support your specific fitness goals.
  • Helps you recover faster. With the right training you can help your muscles recover faster from a training session, and thereby also reduce the possibility of injuries.
  • It relieves stress. This type of training helps to reduce stress and boost your overall vitality and energy levels. It’s a great addition to any workout.
  • Helps to correct bad posture. Functional workouts help to correct bad posture and muscle imbalances caused by stressful jobs and hectic lifestyles.

These are just some of the great benefits of functional workouts. You can use this training with any sport-specific goal you have, to get the results you need. You can also work with a personal trainer such as Terry to help you get the best results possible.

What is HIIT?

High Intensity Interval Training refers to short bursts of intensive exercises that are alternated with lower intensity recovery periods. A typical workout can last from 10 to 30 minutes, and it can offer health benefits almost twice as much as moderate exercise sessions. A good example of an HIIT session is using a stationary bicycle to perform periods of cycling as fast as you can, alternated with periods of slower cycling at a low resistance.

There are many different exercise combinations and the duration and intensity will be determined by your specific fitness goals and overall fitness level. Both functional training and HIIT can be used effectively to help you with sport-specific goals. Exercises can include sprinting, biking, jump rope, bodyweight exercises, and more.

Terry encourages his clients to incorporate HIIT into their workouts regularly, to keep their workouts challenging, and to help them improve their overall fitness levels. Another great aspect of HIIT is the fat loss benefits it provides. 

Both HIIT and functional exercises can burn a lot of calories in a short amount of time. This is one of the reasons why it is so popular, and why so many trainers use this training technique for their clients. Research found that HIIT can burn up to 30% more energy than other forms of exercise, simply by using a program that allows for 20 seconds of maximum effort training, followed by 40 seconds of rest.

It’s important to know that one of the ways in which HIIT helps you to burn calories is actually after you’ve completed an exercise. It works by increasing your metabolic rate for hours afterward, giving you the fat-loss boost you need to reach your fitness goals.

Supporting Sport-Specific Goals

Regardless of the type of sport you are involved in, functional training can help. It can help boost your overall performance, improve your flexibility, and your aerobic endurance. What’s even better is that if you need to be explosive and fast, you can incorporate HIIT into your workout programs and boost your strength and endurance too.

Working with a personal trainer is a great way to have the support and motivation you need to succeed. Working with a pro trainer like Terry, you will not only achieve your sport-specific goals, but also improve your overall fitness and energy levels, not to mention getting in the best shape of your life. Join us at GymNation for these and other great benefits – we have amazing trainers, exciting gym classes, and state-of-the-art fitness equipment to enjoy.

About Terry

Originally from South Africa, Terry Jacob is an ex-Super 15 rugby player and an ex-Springbok 7's international rugby player. He is also a South African junior sprint champion. Terry specializes in explosive, high intensity, functional training, which mirrors his own sporting background where he excelled as a powerful and explosive rugby player.

For more information on functional training and boosting sports performance, contact Terry at
+971 55 213 2850 for an effective personal training program that guarantees results.