I know people who don’t know anything about staff notation or tablature, notes or scales, chords or triads (composing music is a far-fetched dream for them) but still they call themselves musicians just because they have learned how to play two songs on their guitars. Well, they are not. And then I have met people who are stiff as fuck, can’t run, can’t jump, can’t change directions quickly but they call themselves athletes because they go to a gym, train with dumbbells and walk on treadmills. They are the same people as two-songs-guitar-guys. [Double Facepalm] No I’m not taking a dig at anyone, especially not at bodybuilders. I’m just stating the fact. Okay, so let’s not get distracted and talk about components of fitness.
There is a syllabus for everything. And to become proficient at anything, you need to cover the syllabus. How good you are going to be eventually depends on your aptitude and hard work, but you gotta learn the basics first. And this post is about the basics of fitness, about all the components of fitness that an athlete or even a regular person needs to work on in order to get fit. There is one more thing I would like to add here. In all these years of my training, I have learned that absolute fitness is a myth. You can never get absolutely fit, not even if you’re a mutant. Most of the time the reason is the anatomy and physiology of your body. Say, for example, if you’re born with a high percentage of fast twitch muscle fibres, you can’t be a marathon runner. And if you’re born with a high percentage of slow twitch muscle fibres, you can never become a sprinter or a jumper. For being an Olympic gymnast: the shorter, the better; for being a basketballer: the taller, the better; for being a sumo-wrestler: the fatter, the better; and a sprinter is always lean and muscular. I run fast, jump high, lift heavy, have done and been doing martial arts, athletics, powerlifting, calisthenics, gymnastics, and all the other forms of sports training but I’m nowhere even close to getting absolutely fit. I’m still struggling, trying to get as versatile as possible. It’s a never ending journey.
I’m assuming that you can see the photo above but if your internet connection is slow, refresh again. It’s not possible to explain every component in detail in this post. I’ll write separate articles for each component of fitness and explain it to you what they are and how you can train for them. Also, I didn’t include two components here: Body Composition and Reflex. If you’ll google the keywords ‘components of fitness’, maybe you’ll find these two included in the list on many websites. I don’t include them on my list. Allow me to tell you why.
1. Why is body composition not a component of fitness?
Body Composition basically is the ratio or percentages of your lean muscle mass, fat, bone and water in your body. So it can tell a lot about your health but nothing about your fitness. Fitness is what you can do with your body and not what is your body.
2. Why is reflex not a component of fitness?
Your strength, stamina and speed increase if you train. Your flexibility, coordination, balance and accuracy also get better. But you can’t improve your reflex with training. It can’t get better because it’s involuntary. It is controlled by spinal cord and reflex arc (neural pathway). There is no involvement of brain here. But you can improve your reaction time with training. And so that makes reaction time one of the components of fitness.