Competitive sports and functional fitness – a bad idea or a perfect match?

Functional fitness has grown in its popularity all over the world. The curiosity for this type of training is growing and more and more people walk in cross-training and functional fitness studios wanting to try it.

The secret for its popularity is probably the variety that keeps classes interesting. And since the exercises are scalable everybody can join in no matter their physical fitness, start at their level and progress gradually.

Functional fitness is also gaining popularity amongst professional athletes that complement their regular training with functional exercises to better their endurance and coordination.

But is adding functional training exercises to the training regiment of a professional sportsman a smart idea?

Well, we don’t have a simple yes or no answer for you. The simplest answer that we could give is: functional fitness training is very beneficial if done in offseason.

Team Sports

For athletes that compete in team sports adding a visit to the functional fitness studio during their competitive season would have the opposite effect. During their season these athletes have to compete weekly. Adding additional training to their regiment would be tasking on their muscles and would affect their performance during the game. In this case, the added physical and psychical stress of functional training would not help them better physical fitness. But athletes doing team sports can benefit from adding functional training to their training routine in their offseason. In just two or three weeks training functional fitness athletes will advance their physical fitness in time to attack the more specific exercises for their sport in the top of their shape.

Individual Sports

Athletes competing in individual sports have more creative room when it comes to adding functional fitness to their everyday training. Offseason or in season. My personal experience with adding functional fitness to my training is very positive. I used to compete in rowing and I would regularly add functional training to my regimen in the winter months when training on the water is not possible. It can be a great substitute for basic weights training. It has more variety to it, is more fun and dynamical.


To conclude, every sport is different, that is why this is not a simple yes or no answer. But I would suggest that everybody at least considers adding some elements or exercises of functional fitness to their training, in-season or offseason, to better their endurance.


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