This Functional Workout Gets You Fit For Life In Just Seven Moves

Functional exercise is exercise with a practical purpose, as it focuses on building strength in the muscles you use often. As such, they incorporate a lot of familiar everyday movements, such as squatting, carrying heavy objects, and moving quickly over short distances.

Trainer Emily Faury offers plenty of these full-body exercises in her Fi7ness program on the TRUCONNECT fitness app. Specifically, her routine is based on seven types of movements: push, pull, squat, lunge, bend, twist, and travel. These movements are sometimes referred to as primitive movements, although the list of primitive movements changes depending on who you ask.

Each Furey workout includes seven exercises, performed in seven-minute rounds over a period of seven weeks. “This program is really for everyone,” says Frey. “As a society, I think we’re so focused on exercise as a mechanism for improving the way we look, that we often look beyond the physiological. The beauty of the Seven Primordial Movements is that it will develop your functional fitness — and keep you fit for life, if you will.”

Here, Furey takes us through an example session. Perform repetitions for all seven exercises, rest for 60 to 90 seconds, then repeat two more times for a total of three rounds.

1 squat: prisoner squat

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With your hands behind your head, bend your knees until they reach 90 degrees, and push your knees out in the same direction as your toes. Then push through your heels, keeping your hands on your head at all times. Keep your chest up, your shoulders back, and your core engaged. Your toes should be pointing outward, making sure your knees don’t collapse inward as you move.

2 lungs: two lateral lungs

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Stand with your feet slightly apart and your core engaged. Take one leg out to the side, bend that knee to lower it. Make sure your knee follows your toes, so if your toes are pointing outward, so is your knee. The leg that is not working should not bend at all. Drive back and return to the starting position, with both legs straight. Complete all reps on one side, then switch legs.

3 Bending: press on the floor

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Sit on your butt with your legs to one side. Lean to one side and place both hands on the floor. Then push the floor away as if you were doing a push-up to return to an upright seated position. Continue working through the chest when you are close to the floor. The rest of your body should remain as still as possible.

4 Twisting: side shooting

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Start everything with your knees off the floor. Engage your core and keep your hips level with your body the entire time. Twist to one side, lift your hand off the ground from the side you’re twisting toward, and bring your other leg across the gap you created. Return to all fours and alternate sides with each rep.

5 Push: Diamond Piston

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Put your knees on the floor and bend forward to place your hands on the floor with your fingers and thumb touching in a diamond shape. Then tap the floor away to raise your body. Keep your shoulders back and engage your core the entire time. You should also have a straight back, your hips should be parallel to your chest and your head should be in line with your spine.

6 Check Out: Dead Bug

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Lie on your back with your legs flat on a table surface – hips and knees bent at a 90-degree angle, head and shoulders off the floor. Lower one leg just above the floor while bouncing your opposite arm above your head. Move your arm and leg back to the starting position and repeat with the opposite arm and leg. Alternate with each set, moving smoothly and slowly.

7 Travel: Run

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Do short bursts of running either outside or on the treadmill. Keeping your chest up and your torso engaged, keep your knees tight. If space is an issue, try high knees or jogging right away.

Emily Furey Fi7ness’s workout programme, created with former three-time Karate World Champion Dean Hodgkin, is available on TRUCONNECT by TV.

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