What is Functional Training?

What is Functional Training?

Functional Training is training that is designed to get you results!

When is the last time you knew exactly WHAT you were doing, WHY it was supposed to work and HOW you were going to get from where you are to where you want to be?

Maybe that’s all the time. Or maybe, like most people, you learned a few things about how you are ‘supposed’ to train and have pretty much done those ever since.

Functional Training is about escaping from these fixed ideas of what is ‘supposed’ to work and looking at what research and experience say really works for real people. And that’s when the results start coming.

My Journey with Functional Training

I spent my time in various fitness cults. I would tell you that all you needed was the ‘Big 3’ powerlifting moves, or that kettlebells were somehow more functional than dumbbells (and somehow also the only thing you needed).

Now my approach is client-focused. You-focused. Because everyone really is different. And while there are some key movement patterns that I think almost anyone can benefit from practicing, these can vary wildly in how they look from person to person. And that’s absolutely fine.

Looks fine to me.
And so does this!

So what does a Functional Training session look like?

That depends! If you’re relatively fit and healthy and looking to get in slightly better shape, it might look more or less like a ‘normal’ workout. A warmup, some bodyweight or external resistance exercises, some cardio. The usual.

But if you’re an athlete, if you have an injury, if you feel pain executing a movement that’s important to your life (like picking up your child) then we might have to get a little bit creative! Check out the drill below which I put together to help people do squats who might feel pain while squatting.

I could give you examples all day of things I do with clients. But it’s important to me that nothing I do is ‘just because’. Everything is driven by your experience of your body from moment to moment. And that might mean that a movement is in there because you enjoy it or regularly have success, rather than it contributing directly to your goal. But in my opinion that’s also part of Functional Training. Understanding what keeps you motivated and committed to the training.

Sound Interesting?

If you want to give this approach a go, you can get in touch with the contact form below. I offer free consultation slots a couple of times a week to clients anywhere in the world.

If you’re in Canberra, Australia we can work together one-on-one with all my cool toys. If you’re further away then we work together online and you get to see me be a little bit more creative without said toys!

I also have plenty of trainer friends around the world so if you want in-person training but are not in Australia, get in touch anyway and we’ll see if I can hook you up with the perfect trainer.

What are you waiting for?


I'm a movement freak! I love to break down the ways people move to help them get around and do interesting things with more success, less pain, and greater joy. I've worked on five continents with hundreds of people in dozens of settings. And whether it's in a cafe on a Thai beach or in a fully-equipped studio I find I'm generally able to help people move, feel and live better. When I'm not playing the mad movement scientist, I'm generally playing with my baby daughter Jaya or hanging out with the love of my life, her amazing mother Zoe.

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