Floor coverings for Functional Training

Cushioning where appropriate

Not too long ago, no jogger dared to leave the house without a decent air-cushioned running shoe. The high-tech materials were designed for one thing in particular: to prevent excessive strain.


There was one reason for the manufacturers' cushioning euphoria: the initial peak of the jogging wave in the 1980s led to knee complaints in many runners. According to the specialists, the problems were caused by the flat, scarcely cushioned shoes available in the shops back then. The industry reacted promptly by launching soles with increasingly cunning foam cushioning. As a result, knee problems faded, but only to be replaced by the Achilles' tendon.

However, to condemn cushioning outright would be the wrong approach. After all, flooring that offers optimum cushioning properties is more than appropriate for the increasingly popular functional training; indeed, it is indispensable for optimum results.

More effective functional training on cushioned flooring
Functional training has been an integral part of any good exercising programme in the USA and is now increasingly found in Germany too. This is intensive, varied and highly effective training for the whole body. The exercises include working with the own body weight or with special equipment such as kettle bells, sandbags or similar. The workout procedures are performed standing, sitting and supine, including many jumps and other dynamic movements. The cushioning properties of the flooring are therefore highly significant.

Functional training is characterised by what are known as repeated passive peak forces. Only a good surface can provide ideal compensation for the load thus exerted on the body. This applies particularly to beginners or those returning to sporting activity, whose muscles are not so well developed yet.

Furthermore, well cushioned flooring is also good for the bones and joints when exercising in a supine position or when lying on the side. Who wants to have their hips or shoulders resting on hard planks?

Requirements for the ideal cushioning floor
A floor covering that offers optimum cushioning for functional training has to fulfil many requirements. These include above all a certain persistent elasticity together with a robust non-slip surface that is easy to clean. It should also have a neutral odour and insulate from heat and cold. The floor covering should also be impermeable to moisture, in view of the tendency to perspire during exercise. An antibacterial finish is also advisable for reasons of hygiene.

Studies show that optimum training is greatly restricted by the lack of a cushioning, resilient floor covering. This is joined by a drastic increase in injury risks, particularly among beginners, athletes whose coordination is out of practice and above all in those who are overweight.

 

Floor coverings for Functional Training in brief

Minimum requirements:

  • fulfils safety criteria
  • reduces strain on the joints
  • is permanently elastic
  • needs no additional training mats
  • can be adapted to the individual room
  • has a sloping edge
  • has a robust, non-slip surface that is easy to clean
  • insulates from heat and cold
  • can be fitted to the surface without gluing
  • is impermeable to perspiration
  • can be used with other training equipmentn


Also appropriate:
 

  • The floor covering should be offered in a range of colours with visually contrasting marking or wording.

 

Source: Website AGR e.V.