CrossFit 101

CrossFit is taking the fitness world by storm. It is not your routinary, everyday exercise routine. In fact, it is one of the most unique fitness regimens in existence. 

It is a fitness programme developed by CEO Greg Glassman. It is the routine of choice of many police academies and tactical operations teams, military special operations units, champion martial artists and elite athletes. Among the more notable ones include the Canadian Forces, the Royal Danish Life Guards and Major League Baseball’s Miami Marlins.  

CrossFit’s goal is to improve fitness which it defines as “work capacity across broad time and modal domains.”  Glassman reiterates his programme’s difference from regular exercise routines. He says “CrossFit is the application of fundamentals of Newtonian mechanics to human movement, something else that is kind of unique for us.”

Its workouts are short in duration, typically lasting 20 minutes or so. One of its vaunted trademark is its intensity—movements are a combination of sprinting, rowing, jumping rope, climbing rope, flipping tires and weightlifting. Hence, the shortened definition of the programme is “constantly varied, high-intensity, functional movement.”

By dissecting this definition, one would have a clearer idea of what it is all about:

• Constantly varied—CrossFit yields great results because workout plateaus are smashed due to the constant changing of the workouts.

• High Intensity—the programme translates intensity into how much weight one can move over the longest distance in the shortest amount of time, whilst maintaining proper form and technique all throughout. 

• Functional movement—this means the programme puts a premium on movements that are natural and safe. These promote neurological and hormonal responses, leading to better health, actual strength and core stability, agility and flexibility. 

It normally utilises the following equipment:

Barbells

Dumbbells

Gymnastics rings

Pull-up bars

Kettlebells

Medicine balls

CrossFit also licences its programmes to gyms worldwide for a fee. The company also certifies trainers.

One of its impressive features is its wide array of specialty seminars that include gymnastics, Olympic weightlifting, powerlifting, running and endurance as well as kettlebells. It also has programmes for pregnant women, senior citizens and military special forces candidates. 

To make things even more interesting and competitive, the CrossFit games were organised in 2007. From a measly $ 250 in its inaugural year, the prize money for male and female champions has grown to an amount of $250,000 in 2011 and 2012. Rich Froning, Jr. won back-to-back championships in those years in the men’s division whilst Annie Mist Thorisdottier earned the very same distinction in the women’s category. 

If you want to take your fitness to a whole new different level, give CrossFit a shot. 

Sources:

http://www.crossfit.com/cf-info/what-crossfit.html

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Greg_Glassman

http://www.crossfitnashua.com/what-is-crossfit

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