A Whole New Paradigm of Wellness
In the literal sense, FUNCTIONAL HEALTH (FH) is about your muscles, bones, joints, nerves, and everything else that’s responsible for your physical ability to move. It’s your mechanical well-being. But what Functional Health is really about is optimizing your ability to do the activities that you need to do and that you want to do, without being hampered by pain or injury. Whether that’s keeping up your weekly tennis match, playing with your kids, or simply unloading your groceries, the goal of Functional Health is to improve your capacity to perform your life.
A New Category of Health: Functional Health is a whole new kind of health. The only one that pertains specifically to your physical function, it fills the gap left by more traditional categories of health. Whereas diabetes, heart disease and depression are ailments of general medical health, cardiovascular health, and mental health respectively, things like arthritis, muscle strains, tendonitis, and pinched nerves are examples of Functional Health “illnesses.” Anything that impairs your ability to function normally compromises your Functional Health.
All by Design: The foundation of Functional Health is the body’s physical design, probably the most finely engineered design that exists. Like any high-end machine, the human body works best when it’s able to work like it’s meant to. That means joints moving properly, muscles in the right balance with each other, and so on. And the real key to optimal Functional Health is doing things–both your routine activities and your exercises–in ways that work with your body’s design, not against it. Simply put: when your body can’t work as designed, you pay the price in pain. So improving your FH is just a matter of understanding your body’s basic design and learning how to enhance it.
Functional Health requires that your body be in shape to do whatever you’re asking it to do….Simply put: when your body can’t work as designed, you pay the price in pain. “
Being in Shape to Do Nothing: Most aches and pains don’t come from performing extraordinary feats; they come from doing routine activities. In fact, doing “nothing” is one of the riskiest things we do. Literally doing “nothing” (e.g. becoming one with the couch) as well as figuratively doing nothing (e.g. working at a desk, unloading the dishwasher) are responsible for more neck and back pain than any sport. The basic truth is that being in good Functional Health requires that your body be in shape to do whatever you’re asking it to do. In other words, you actually have to be in shape to do “nothing.” Sound ridiculous? Consider how long a professional chef can whisk a batter by hand….and then think about how long you’d last before the burning and cramping in your arm would make you cry uncle.
About Your Function: Not everyone needs the balance of a tightrope walker, the endurance of a pro cyclist or the strength of a bodybuilder. You determine what level of Functional Health you need to improve your performance of your life.