The Fitness Fixer
The Fitness Fixer

Fast Fitness - The First Group Functional Training Exercise, Good Bending for Back and Knees

Here is Fast Friday Fitness - the first of the promised series of Functional Fitness Training (call it FFT or Bookspan Basics for now) that you can teach your teams, squads, classes, students, kids, groups, battalions, etc.

Assemble your group in neat rows so you can see each participant, and they feel the self-control of the neat rows. Stand in front facing sideways so everyone can see you in profile view. Tell them that the first Functional Fitness Training is a basic move that is needed many dozens of times every day, for their special sport or activity and for daily life - good bending:

  1. Tell everyone to keep both heels down on the ground while they bend their knees and crouch about halfway down
  2. Tell everyone to look down at their own feet and pull their (bent) knees back until they can see their toes. Tell them if they cannot see their toes because their knees cover their toes, their knees are too far forward (left).
  3. Have everyone stand and bend again, this time properly without needing to adjust knees back over feet (right). They should feel the difference - using thigh and hip muscles, instead of sliding weight forward onto the knees.

Repeat good bending 10 times or any number that suits your group's need - more for groups needing higher training (or groups with poorer memory), faster for teams requiring this skill done quickly in actual use, and so on. Then put items on the ground they use for their sport or work and use the new good bending to retrieve. Replace on ground with good bending, and retrieve with good bending. Repeat for the number suited for your needs.

Tell everyone that this is how they can bend for picking up all their gear (except medical or tactical reason not to). Watch them for good bending practices throughout the team season. Reduce back injury from bad bending, get leg exercise, burn calories, and build strong bones from the many free built-in squats daily.

Each new Functional Training exercise will show you how to teach your groups (or self) how to prevent common musculoskeletal issues that arise during the team season or operational theater. Send in your ideas for a name for this program. Trainers, send in your stories of how you use them in your program.

Good body mechanics are a powerful performance enhancing aid.

Functional Group Trainings:

Related Fitness Fixer:

Unrelated Random Fitness Fixer:

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Drawing of Backman!™ © copyright Dr. Jolie Bookspan
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About the Author


Dr. Bookspan is an award-winning scientist whose goal is to make exercise easier and healthier.