So what’s the deal about Crossfit?! Seems like most people are doing it, or at least on Instagram they are. It definitely sounds cool and most of the participants look great (aesthetically) doing it. But what is exactly is Crossfit? What are the pros and cons? How can we dissect Crossfit so that we fully understand it? In this article I will be pulling apart the pieces for readers to further understand this high-intensity sport. Ask your personal trainer in Richmond for their opinion on Crossfit.
What exactly is Crossfit?
According to www.crossfit.com, Crossfit is “a lifestyle characterized by safe, effective exercise and sound nutrition. Crossfit can be used to accomplish any goal, from improved health to weight loss to better performance.” In other words, Crossfit is used to tackle any health or performance related goals through workouts and nutrition. Personally, it sounds like a high-intensity group training program to accelerate an individual towards his or her goals. To ME, Crossfit is a big corporation, with different franchise, to deliver high-intensity training to all populations. Crossfit can be done as part of a lifestyle and a competitive sport. Ask your personal trainer in Richmond for the definition of Crossfit.
The key in a Crossfit training session, from what I understand, is high-intensity. The heart rate is constantly elevated. Some workout regimes are to get as much done within the time allocated. The tempo is go-go-go. For those who are targeting losing body fat, I recommend these high-intensity type workouts. Crossfit workouts really push the maximum amount of calories burned during a session. More output, more body fat loss.
Another aspect of Crossfit I admire is that over 95% of the exercises selected in a workout session are compound movements. This means multi-joint movements such a squats, presses and deadlifts. Some movements require the entire body and even works on explosive power (using exercises such as cleans and snatches). If you are looking to strengthen your athletic edge for sports, these explosive movements are your bread and butter. Ask your personal trainer in Richmond for their pros and cons of Crossfit.
Due to the high-intensity nature in Crossfit, it is rather difficult for a complete beginner to learn the movements to fully appreciate the complete benefits of Crossfit. In a selected training session, if a snatch is selected as one of the movements, it will place a challenge on the beginner. In addition, if an individual is deconditioned, or injured, the high-intensity pace may discourage him/her from continuing with this sport. They may need to stop training from being deconditioned or unable to perform movements due to prior injuries.
Another con is programming. From the years I have been coaching, clients have given me their two cents about their experience in Crossfit. A lot of these feedback are not positive. If I were to sum up all the feedback I have received, it would be that Crossfit requires you to perform multi-joint weighted movement under fatigue. This is recipe for INJURY. This is why a lot of people get injured from Crossfit; FATIGUE. For example, a training sessions could have a 400 meter run then followed with toes-to-bar for repetitions and wall-balls for repetitions. Lastly, individuals perform a power snatch that is almost their bodyweight. Because they are under a fatigued state, chances of mistake highly increase. With mistakes you get injuries. Movements when you are fresh are not the same when you are fatigued.
Potential adaptations in Crossfit
If Crossfit was completely erased and started over again from scratch, I would recommend some things to be changed. In terms of programming, I recommend having a strict rule of keeping heavy and explosive movements in the beginning of the training session and keeping the low intensity, high repetition exercises toward the end. This would do a great deal in terms of preventing injuries. In addition, I would recommend adding PRE-hab exercises in the training sessions to further prevent injuries. Injury prone areas such as the neck, shoulder, hips, knees and ankles need extra care and attention to ensure a long Crossfit career. So what would I keep? Again, I admire the high-intensity fashion that Crossfit holds so I would keep that aspect. Of course, we must scale to each individual and their capabilities and needs.
Until next time,