In 1943 the Chairman of IBM, Thomas Watson, quoted "I think there is a world market for maybe five computers". A conservative estimate considering these days many of us have five each in some capacity or another.

History is littered with predictions of the failure of concepts, ideas and inventions. In 1878 British Parliament referred to light bulbs as "good enough for our transatlantic friends but unworthy of the attention of practical or scientific men". In 1904 Marshal Ferdinand Foch stated "Airplanes are interesting toys but of no military value". In 1926 Lee De Forest declared television was "an impossibility, a development of which we need waste little time dreaming". In 2005 Sir Allan Sugar insisted, "by next Christmas the iPod will be dead, finished, gone, kaput".

I know that is a long winded way to make a point, but it is a point that needs to be hammered home in light of certain sectors of our industry questioning whether functional fitness is a just a 'fad'. Referring to something as a fad implies that it will be popular for a period of time, usually a short period, until something more bizarre and quirky and well marketed comes along to take our affection. Then our old 'fad' fades into insignificance as thenew 'Vibro 2000 Ab Blaster'...or 'Pilloxing'...become the apple of the fitness industry's eye.

So, according to some, functional fitness is a fad and therefore sooner or later it is going to disappear. Good luck with that.

Naysayers beware, you may need to reconsider. After all, how do those shoes get on your feet every day? No matter what your technique is there is an element of 'functional' movement involved. How did you manage to play with your children at the weekend? 'Functional' training again no doubt. Carried your own shopping bags? Walked up some stairs? Ever thrown a ball? All are 'functional' movements.

By way of its nature functional fitness training is based upon natural human movements that have been used for hunting, gathering, fighting, recreation and maybe even procreation. For hundreds, thousands, arguably millions of years man has been developing the very useful arts of pushing, pulling, lifting, carrying, dragging and wrestling with others. If you can call 'since the dawn of time' a fad, then functional fitness is guilty of being a fad.  

They were wrong about computers. Wrong about light bulbs. Wrong about airplanes. Wrong about iPods. Wrong about Lance Armstrong. And wrong about functional fitness training.

Still think functional fitness training is just a fad? Ask Eugene Sandow, and he will probably tell you that you are talking a load of old Pilloxing.

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