I was told today about a new functional “fitness tool”.

I was then showed a picture of a mace.

Yep, like a kiddie version of the weapon from the dark ages.

And, apparently it is the “most functional” fitness tool ever.

So, before I explain my thoughts on this. Let me break down the basics of this.

What is functional fitness?

It’s the most over used phrase in the fitness community.

It’s supposed to connotate the abillity to use the movements you are training to your daily life.

So with that on mind, is a weighted squat functional? Probably not. Atleast not for the average office worker. But, most gyms claim it is the most functional movement. Weird.

Is a power clean functional? I’ve never needed to perform a snatch in my daily life. But this is also supposedly functional.

So, what is going on here?

The body is extremely and specifically adaptable.

So, functional fitness would only apply specifically to how you live your life.

If you lift boxes for a living, squatting and deadlifting are functional movements.

If you are a cop and want to take out a criminal, running and MMA become functional.

Does that mean you shouldn’t squat or deadlift if you work in an office?


What you should be looking for is transferable fitness. A term that is generally referred to, though incorrectly, when people say functional fitness.

The Squat not only makes your back stronger, which can make sitting at a desk all day less painful, it can also help moving the couch to the other side of the house by letting you squat down to pick it up.

While you will never power clean in real life, learning to shift your weight under a heavy object, when you are carrying that new refrigerator up your stairs when your hands start slipping, starts making more sense

Swinging a mace on the other hand, not so much. Unless you are planning on waging medievel war on someone, in that case, by all means. But, in that case, I also recommend getting a real mace and practicing in some armor.