The body, life, is based around movement. In prehistoric times, those that moved the best…LIVED. Today our society has gotten so used to sitting and having things come to us, not having to challenge ourselves to find food or survive for example. Hell, you don’t even need to get out of the car at the grocery store anymore. I mean what’s next, have someone feed us? *Sigh, OK rant over* We need to get back to being more movement based individuals, and it starts with our training.
For too long training focused on using machines, which are limiting, restrict movement, and don’t always follow an individual’s body flow. Luckily, we are seeing a renaissance of sorts with movement-based, or multiplanar, exercises. This is the foundation, I believe, of functional fitness. Unlike traditional machines, multiplanar training focuses on training around joints and joint actions, not individual muscle groups. By focusing on how the joint naturally moves, the muscle groups will follow and be worked accordingly. Some benefits to multiplanar training are:
- Helps fix movement patterns
- Increases proprioception (knowing where and how to move your body in space)
- Increases the mind/muscle connection and forms new neural pathways (strong body, strong mind)
- Decreases muscle imbalances which leads to joint dysfunction and….
- Decreases injury due to the imbalances
- Increases muscle building as multiplanar movements are compound, working multiple muscle groups at once, which…
- Increases exercise economy (get more work done in a shorter amount of time)
- Multiplanar workouts are total body in nature
- Not sitting on machines causes more core activation (stronger core = better you)
- It’s fun! Who doesn’t like
- Duck walks
- Bear crawls
- Gorilla walks, etc
Without boring you with technical jargon, when developing a multiplanar program focus on moving:
- Side to Side
- Front to back, back to front
Doing this with both upper and lower body joints will ensure a total body workout based on how the body should move and function.
***For questions or examples of multiplanar workouts, follow me on Instagram @jnicholsfitness