Why Training Outdoors is Important

Why Training Outdoors is Important

Why Training Outdoors is Important

One subject that is often brought up in regards to training at the moment is functional strength. This is definitely a concept that is very in vogue and one that a lot of people are very interested in.

But what does it really mean?

Well, there's what people think it means and then there's what it really means.
Essentially, functional training refers to the kind of training that will actually have an impact on your real life ability to use your body. This will often be taken to mean compound movements like the squat and the deadlift. These are moves that use multiple different muscle groups in unison and that can, therefore, challenge the body to move as one functional unit. This is in contrast to an isolation movement like the bicep curl, which is something we would never use in a real-life setting.

Compound movements are also more functional because they mimic natural movements we use everyday primal things like picking weight up from the floor, like squatting down, or like jumping.

That's the theory anyway...

Training Outdoors: "The Only Truly Functional Form of Training."

In reality though, many trainers say that the only truly functional form of training is to train outdoors... But why?

Well for starters, this most closely mimics the intended use of our bodies. Our bodies evolved as we were living and hunting outdoors. This is what they're designed for. And if we use them in this way, we are using them for their natural purpose. In the wild, we would have sometimes had to climb trees, pick up rocks or run up hills.

You know what we would never have done? Squatted down to the floor to pick up a straight metal bar with perfect form!

In fact, in the wild, there would have been no such things as perfect form. Rather, every time we lifted anything, it would have been completely different. Every rock is a slightly different weight and a slightly different shape. Likewise, every tree branch is a slightly different size and a slightly different angle.

This is important because it forces the body to continually adapt and to be hardy against these constantly changing challenges.
Then there are all the other benefits to training outdoors: the fact that it means you're getting more fresh air, the fact that it means you're getting more sunlight and vitamin D and the fact that it means you're training in the cold to produce more adrenaline.

So get outside and start doing some pull-ups from some tree branches!