Corrective exercises and functional training are similar therapies designed to build strength during rehabilitation. These wide-ranging exercises are used to improve overall body mechanics, movement, flexibility and correct overall joint and muscular disfunction dysfunction while increasing strength.
Functional training and corrective exercises are beneficial to everyone, regardless of pain condition or injury. In the context of physical therapy, most people taking part in functional training are working through an injury, disorder, or recent procedure that requires them to regain strength for the purpose of improving skills in everyday activities like walking, squatting, lifting, or general mobility.
What should I expect during functional training?
A functional workout will vary depending on the goals of every individual patient; however, appointments will typically consists of compound exercises such as lunges, squats, and deadlifts. Other exercises will be included that mimic everyday movements—like pushing, pulling, squatting, hinging, and rotating.
The key difference between corrective exercise and functional training is found in the goals behind the selected exercise program.
Corrective exercises are designed to address the immediate limitations that are present. This can include decreased active range of motion, strength, and poor mechanics. Improvement in these exercises allows us to transition to functional training with ease.
Functional training, on the other hand, focuses on improving specific motions and activities that are required for daily function and sport/recreation. They can include, but are not limited to, squatting, lunging, running and jumping. Functional training is a way to introduce targeted exercise to enhance movements and increase activity tolerance.
The great thing about corrective exercises and functional training is that they are wholly based on the principles of proper body mechanics. So, while they may be designed and planned around those recovering from an injury or looking to regain athletic ability, the exercises are truly beneficial to anyone; those with or without an injury, young or old.
Functional training may be used to help patients with a number of conditions, including: