As a supplement to a paleo lifestyle, I also engage in Crossfit and I am sure that many of you do as well. A friend of mine has recently joined Crossfit and taken up a paleo lifestyle. I would love to know how to a) shut this guy up and b) provide a well formulated response so that no one else who sees his post is discouraged from joining a CF affiliate near them. I have a pretty good idea of some points I want to make but I wanted some extra input. Below is his post:
Crossfit is gut-checks and light on technique. You are having fun now but injury is in your future. My 2 cents.
CrossFit gets people off the couch, and that is great. But beyond that, it lacks in programming in one major significant way. The "WOD" format does nothing to address any one individual's specific needs, and that is my beef. Everyone's structure is different, and the WOD format doesn't address that Person A may lack proper hip mobility for overhead squats, and Person B may have poor scapular movement for overhead squats, yet this is ignored and both people do overhead squats in a timed "contest" because the WOD says so. It drives the responsibility for safety to the individual, and then undermines it by creating a competitive environment. Injuries rarely happen in one day, they are instead the result of many accumulated microtraumas over the span of months or even years.
As far as I can tell the WOD also lack any specific themes; kipping pull-ups one day, overhead squats the next, kettlebell swings, blah blah blah. It seems to lack focus on movement quality. The timed aspect of the workouts create a competitive environment, which almost always leads to form breakdown, and the movement quality never gets any more sophisticated. If you can do 100 push-ups today, then next week hopefully you can do 101. If you can do 100 push-ups today, why not evolve the movement with a progression so that someday you can do handstand push-ups? I don't see that happening.
CrossFit also has poor consistency. The quality of training varies greatly from one affiliate to the next. It grew too fast. So if your trainers are EDUCATED and CERTIFIED (i love how you capitalized these, as if it meant something), they're still part of CrossFit and I argue the methodology is flawed. CrossFit is out to make money, first and foremost. I've done the whole RKC certification thing, did the bootcamp, I'm not completely ignorant in the subject matter here. The RKC and the CrossFit methodologies are very similar, except one is focused on the kettlebell. They scream about quality, but do little to enforce it, evaluate it, and improve it beyond screaming "KEEP PROPER FORM.......30 SECONDS LEFT, PUSH YOURSELVES". When when your lungs are bleeding and your adrenal system has pushed you into overdrive, you are incapable of making conscious and rational decisions regarding form and safety.
So Natalie, when doing your CrossFit, seek to understand what it is, what it offers, and what it does not offer so you can eventually evolve your personal concept of fitness beyond it. It may suit your needs now, but it will most likely not lead to a life of sustainable, repeatable gains in your workout goals. It'll keep you skinny, unless of course you get injured, then you won't be able to work out at all.
On a side note, get involved in a serious Yoga program. I've never seen a woman who does serious Yoga that did not look just fabulous. My 2 cents.
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on May 21, 2010
at 04:03 PM
I think his points are all right on. He doesn't strike me as a hater at all! In fact, it seems to me that he goes out of his way to provide a reasoned analysis of the flaws in the way CF is implemented in many affiliates. If you want haters, you can easily find them elsewhere.
CF is great if you program it intelligently. That's why many of the best affiliates are doing 5x5 or 3x5 strength work several days a week, in addition to met-cons. Most of the best affiliates have L2-certified trainers, or even better, people who have been training people for a long time. OPT, for example is only L1, I believe, but he knows more about training than almost anybody.
I know a fair number of L1-certified people (I have an L1 myself and used to work for a box). All very nice people, but I would not trust most of them to train anybody I care about. Now they've added a 50-question multiple-choice test (which I have not yet taken), but come on... that doesn't make you a knowledgeable trainer.
I love certain things about CF: the camaraderie, the community (where else can you find a room full of 50 people, most of whom exercise a lot AND eat Paleo daily?). I love how CF has brought Oly lifting to our attention. I REALLY appreciate how CF got me (and thousands of others) started on Paleo.
I very much dislike certain things about CF, and the guy that you would like to shut up has pointed out most of them. Pointed critiques have also surfaced elsewhere from the CF and the ex-CF community (Robb Wolf, to name one of many). Many of these critics love (or loved, I guess) CF and continue to incorporate certain aspects of CF in their own training.
I would not necessarily discourage people from joining a CF box. Some of them are excellent. I'd pay good money to train with OPT or Kstar/Boz at SFCF or any number of CF trainers.
But your critic is right: many boxes are full of newbie trainers who can't teach the air squat properly, much less a back squat, and don't even talk to me about the snatch. [Edit: take me, for example: I have no plans to teach the barbell snatch any time soon -- I absolutely lack the qualifications. But I see some other L1s "teaching" it after being exposed to it for 15 minutes at their L1....] Take a look at some of the affiliates' websites and you will see many, many examples of terrible programming.
Many newbies who walk through the door of a new CF box don't know what they are looking for, just like many people who jump into Paleo don't know which "experts" to trust at first. That said, CF done poorly is better than most things out there. CF done well is pretty amazing. [Edit: Just giving credit where it is due... I think Dutch Lowy once said something like this, and others probably have as well.]
I do think his yoga comment is gratuitous. =P Screw yoga. Lift heavy things and sprint hard. I'd rather women look like Tanya Wagner than Paris Hilton.
on May 23, 2010
at 03:08 PM
Just do intense yoga? Almost like shut up and go in the kitchen.
Those who can't, complain.
Just remember that.
on March 02, 2011
at 03:43 AM
Disclaimer: I never post in forums or engage in anything such as this but I just couldn't resist.
I just love how so many have opinions on this subject after just learning about it from this post or from an internet forum. Google search...wow look what I found! 1 gym out of thousands and 1 client out of even more...he got hurt and sued and probably put someone out of business and possibly destroyed a family's dream and/or income! Be realistic please...
Maybe he didn't take a break when he should have, maybe the trainer was that bad? I doubt they were trying to give him rabdo..maybe they were just trying to live the Xfit dream and get people fit and working hard...Who knows? Shit happens. Point is: Please don't make statements in general about things that you don't really understand or that you have very limited experience with. And that includes anyone in the industry...do your hands-on-real-life research before formulating a opinion. Then when you have that opinion..use it properly. Don't disparage what I do down in Florida because you had a bad experience or 5 up in new jersey or whereever...
You are affecting peoples lives, NO, perhaps 'infecting' is a better word. You are likely to 'infect' someones mind with an idea. That is powerful. Be careful with that. As America gets fatter and sicker and big pharma and processed food companies get richer and more powerful, CrossFit and the community behind it is saving lives. Not CrossFit.com. CrossFit.com is great and a great resource if used properly..Most people don't. The affiliates that live and breathe this lifestyle every single day are the reason this program, and others such as the Paleo community, are blowing up in popularity. All you here should be thanking and supporting us. Better for you and better for us.
Everyone in the world is a nutrition and fitness expert. I know that because I am one. And because people try to tell me how things are on a regular basis. The bittersweet struggle of being an affiliate owner. Love it to death!
The best CrossFit affiliates in the world are housing some of the best coaches in the world. Some of the worst CrossFit affiliate's probably have some of the worst/wanna-be coaches in the world.
CrossFit.com is not a franchisor and CrossFit boxes are not franchisees. It is an open source program and a small yearly affiliate fee is paid to the parent corporation in exchange for the name. JUST THE NAME! This leaves the interpenetration and implementation of the entire business up to the individual business owner. As a small business owner and a successful affiliate owner I can tell you that most people suck at business and even more suck at coaching. So you should EXPECT to hear about injuries from less than stellar affiliates.
Athletes get injured all the time. People in golds gym or lA fitness do as well. This isn't new and it will never change...it is just a part of life. But because CrossFit is the new kid on the block everyone feels the need to tear it down. That is the typical mass response to anything new or popular. Always the haters. As far as the injuries go, I can absolutely guarantee that a large percentage of the injuries are avoidable and happen because of laziness or irresponsibility (And not just the trainers either)
Check out Mr. Staretts post on this: http://mobilitywod.blogspot.com/2011/02/episode-185365-improving-jump-mechanism.html
In our gym we keep WOD's shorter most of the time, longer once a week, and in between sometimes. We do a 5/3/1 strength focus and a skill based NOT FOR TIME wod every class. As well as a 3-5 minute body temp warmup and a 5-10 minute dynamic stretching/movement warmup. WOD's last between 5-15 minutes on average...with goal being form first followed by intensity second.
I regularly have to tell my clients to take rest days or go slower or take it easy. People get over zealous when they get excited. New clients are given basic human functional movements. We don't follow the mainsite WOD but The Mainsite WOD is geared towards olympic athletes...everyone else SHOULD be scaled. There is also a learning curve to CrossFit and it's movements. It isn't as simple as showing up and doing a WOD rx and that is it. There is so much more to it. Come to my box and I will show you!
We have had ZERO injuries at our box. Why? How? Because we progress people properly and safely and slowly. Because we routinely tell people to take it easy and SAFETY first. And because we have great coaches and clients that love what they do.
There are typically 3-5 local affiliates everywhere you go in United States..it shouldn't be hard to find a few and to compare them. Try each one and choose what suits your needs. OR do Private training and get personalized and individual advice and scaling and programming.
Our websites are: Trainingboxgym.com and www.CrossFitEstero.wordpress.com
I won't be engaging in any forum banter, I'm simply too busy. This reply was a indulgence I allowed myself.
BTW I am a 100% devote fan of Paleo/Primal and preach it to all of our clients. I also preach rest and recovery, sometimes to no avail! People always think MORE is BETTER.
on May 21, 2010
at 04:30 PM
As a CrossFit and RKC/Pavel aficionado, I think I see the problem here. A lot of folks who are new to CrossFit methodologies have a problem with the fact that everyone does the same thing - and there's no customization for the individual.
Greg Glassman, founder of CrossFit, says the fitness needs of our grandparents and elite military operators should differ by degree of intensity, not kind.
I wholeheartedly agree with this perspective. The problem is that people who are new to the community have a hard time understanding all the elements of intensity. Intensity can define range of motion, weight used, time taken, etc.. not simply reps completed.
If someone has a serious hip mobility issue, a good trainer's going to address that individually - thus affecting the intensity... also referred to as Power = Force x Distance / Time
I've personally worked with adapting CrossFit for wounded veterans with a tremendous amount of success - where everyone does nearly the exact same movement, tailored for the individual. It also has the effect of bringing about a sense of camaraderie that you won't find in any other type of gym outside a MMA/combative school.
I do tend to agree with Jae and the FB poster on one point in particular - CrossFit has grown very fast and sometimes that can bring down the overall quality of instruction. Saying that injury is eminent though is a joke. I was certified in Aug. of 2008 and have admittedly learned more after I was certified than I did through the process... but, you'd be hard pressed to find a group of trainers without a few relatively green folks compared to veterans.
To say that Yoga, which can have equally disastrous consequences under the care of a poor instructor, is more capable of improving an individual's life more than CrossFit is absurd in my opinion.
on December 10, 2010
at 10:50 AM
FORM, FORM, FORM!!! COSSFIT WANT YOU TO COMPLETE THE SET NO MATTER HOW YOU DO IT, THAT WILL GET YOU INJURED!!! I been a personal trainer for nearly 25 years. My specialty is pre & post rehab. To make this short and sweet, crossfit is by far the most dangerous exercise routine that I know of. We have 3 crossfit affiliates with in 5-7 miles from where I work in Northern Virginia. I get a phone call at least once sometimes three times per week about how someone hurt themselves doing crossfit workouts. To be fair to crossfit. I just want to mention that if you are between a male and between 17 and 25 years old who love to get great results fast and don???t care about being injured or not, then crossfit might be right for you. Injuries is by far the biggest problem with crossfit. To make money many crossfit affiliates have any where between 7-14 people in a class. I hope their members have insurance, because they will get injured. CROOSFIT IS DANGEROUS AND A VERY DANGEROUS WORKOUT ROUTINE!!!. I have 27 clients, so I am booked solid for next 8 months with clients and I am not here to bad mouth crossfit. Crossfit will kill your body and is it will you injure you, I can guaranteed that.
on December 14, 2010
at 07:00 PM
I have so much to say I can barely articulate it all so I???m going to just try to stick with the major points I???d like to make in your defense!
Could be the "box" or gym that this guy has gone to? Did he not speak up or ask questions? In my experience, CrossFit focuses on the needs of their particular ???box??? and varies the programming as such. Likewise, any and all workouts/WODS can be scaled OR modified for the INDIVIDUAL and their needs. (Heck, there is programming/scaling/MOD for Wounded Warriors, pregnant women, and children)
Daily in our box, we have a warm-up PLUS then we go over the movements that will be utilized that day and the coaches go around and work with individuals. Likewise, any injury or sticking point is known by each staff member so that modifications or scaling can be done. Sometimes you get to go all out and sometimes it is deemed that you don???t have the proper mechanics or skill so you are told to scale or MOD. And if you feel uncomfortable you are also able to make that choice for yourself.
What I'd like to say, with any workout, as a human with a brain you need to know your limits. No one knows better than you how far or fast or much you can push your body but YOU. Just because someone is saying "GO FASTER" doesn't mean you have to jump off the cliff with them, most of the time comments like that are the coaches trying to ENCOURAGE you to do your best not send you to the emergency room. If doing your best means slowing down and working on form - then do that! (That???s what I do!) Also, coaches may yell key words so you know what to work on, such as getting lower in a squat or fully extending your hips. Not sure about other boxes, but at ours if you???re doing something terribly wrong or dangerous the coach stops you right there and then so you DON???T get injured or injure anyone else!
The last point I wanted to make is that just because he???s seen ONE WOMAN who does ???serious yoga???that just looks fabulous??? makes me want to vomit. I tried Yoga myself before becoming a CrossFitter and I decided that Yoga wasn???t for me (just as CrossFit might not be for someone else???) I only lost 5 lbs and on top of that I injured my neck and shoulder. You can get injured doing anything! Honestly the yoga comment as well as the threatening ???you ARE going to injure yourself??? comments sounds really sexist to me. Sounds like he???s scared by your strength and wants to hold you back - rather than being honestly concerned for your well-being. But that???s just my 2 cents???.
on December 11, 2010
at 03:05 AM
I am a 28 year old woman from Alexandria Virginia. I joined a crossfit gym in old town Virginia in February of 2010 to lose about 40 lbs for my wedding. I was so psyched to start doing crossfit. I told my trainer that I hurt my shoulder when I slipped on ice when we had our last winter blizard. He said not worry about my shoulder, not only he will fix my shoulder he will also help me lose the 40 lbs weight. I went from a shoulder injury to a crippled body. So far I have spend well over $13000 in medical bills. These bastards ruined my life. Just found this http://www.healthcentral.com/diet-exercise/c/58426/46798/training
on May 21, 2010
at 04:16 PM
One of the major things that crossfit pushes is the scalability of the WODs. If a person is following the online postings every day on the commmts section they are likely to find resources on how to scale effectively. However this is definitely up to the individual.
The beef that person had with not representing individual needs is I believe just a part of how it's supposed to be. If a person has individual goals then are they really looking for the kind of all-around fotnessthat crossfit programming aims for? If you want to get heyuge or be a marathoner check out crossfitfootball or crossfitendurance. If you want to be in the crossfit games then you're probably going to have to do supplemental workouts or modify the posted routine to fit your specific needs.
The comment on how it's not progressive seems likely, but every time you go overhead you are building muscles that help you work towards those HDPUs.
I do agree that different boxes have different styles and levels of ability both in the trainers an the clients. Be on the lookout for things and hey, why not suggest improvements to the trainers themselves? Crossfit is supposed to be open source so I doubt they will mock a person for suggestions or questions.
Lastly, as has been discussed before, crossfit is not for everyone. I would suggest trying it but if you don't like it them go do something else.
on December 10, 2010
at 10:51 PM
I agree with Steve, Just go on youtube and watch these shitty trainers and their injured clients to be. If you call you self a good or great trainer, then you will see al the bad forms these people perform. Most of these video are promoted by crossfit.com. My girlfriend's father broke hi leg doing crossfit. Ask any good instructor if crossfit is a good workout routine. Crossfit will be the next fin fin!!!
on May 21, 2010
at 04:20 PM
Why assume someone who is discouraged by his post is someone you think ought to do CrossFit anyway? Why shut him up? Discourse is GOOD, and will lead to improved quality. He asks good questions ... as should anybody attempting exercise of any form that they haven't tried before. It's good to look at and smell the Kool-Aid before drinking it. Your friend makes solid points about being cautious.
Even the Crossfit main site forums discuss this issue - it's always going to be problematic that the quality of trainers/coaches at each facility will vary quite widely. The better affiliates DO NOT follow the mainsite WOD, they do their own programming AND insist on an "on ramp" type of program to ensure that you know what you're doing before you join a group of very experienced exercisers. Wast that your experience? Even after on-ramp, you still need to audition to join in the regular group of exercisers. I'm guessing that your friend wasn't guided this way; it's a pity, and a huge risk for anybody who doesn't understand what they're getting into with gymnastics and Olympic weight lifting moves.
Further, your friend's question about themes. It appears the affiliate she joined didn't discuss that this is overall training, the point is to vary the workout and the workload so that your overall body conditioning improves. And, the affiliate did not spend enough time explaining why functional training is better than sport-specific or single muscle training (e.g. bicep curl).
If form matters, and I agree it does, this affiliate isn't doing their job by shouting out "form"! There should be specific pointers about form for every single exercise! And the coaches should be correcting form on every individual as needed.
The better affiliates will also say that just having CrossFit certification isn't enough. Only recently did they insist that coaches pass a test. Previously, just pay your money and you're certified. That's not good. The best affiliate coaches will have CSCS, ACSM, and other highly-regarded qualifications BEFORE they affiliate. These coaches will make sure you ramp up, will tell you that ramp up is at least 6 months, and the first month is always in a small group or individual session AWAY from the rest of the exercisers.
If I were you, and you really feel that strongly about doing CrossFit, is research other affiliates, check out the qualifications (and reject ANYBODY that only has CrossFit training), check out the 'box' and then see if you agree or disagree with your friend.
She means well, and has made a number of really valid points. Crossfit may be the best thing you've done, and it is possible your affiliate is one of those that lacks quality, perspective, solid credentialing, and a plan for what to do if you get hurt.
on March 02, 2011
at 10:35 PM
WOW I find it extremely ironic that people on the paleo site are so judgmental about CrossFit. I'm a fan of CrossFit did it on my own several years ago then moved on to a couple other programs and when a box opened in my area I came back. All you "haters" sound like the people who (don't eat paleo) raving about the dangers of such an "extreme" diet. Both CrossFit and Paleo diets are viewed by many as 'fringe' or 'cultist'.
"You're going to get injured = you're cholesterol will go sky high."
"Everyone's structure is different, and the WOD format doesn't address that Person A may lack proper hip mobility for overhead squats, and Person B may have poor scapular movement for overhead squats, yet this is ignored and both people do overhead squats in a timed "contest" because the WOD says so" Is like saying everyone digestive system: person A. may have liver issues and not be able to handle all the protein. Person B. is a vegetarian and needs a protein source. So if you have hip mobility problems use lighter weights or modify the movement. I have limited scapular mobility and can't OHS more than 45 lbs. If the workout calls for 95lb OHS I use less weight (a lot less weight).
"Paleo is a fad diet right now & not something you should be doing for life" (LMAO!!!)
Because one guy in the Navy got Rhabdo you're condemning all of CrossFit? every year high school football players get Rhabdo, some even die, is football bad? no certain programing is bad and certain people don't know when to back off. A good trainer will recognize this and prevent problems.
The bottom line is or some CrossFit is a great way to get into awesome shape and meets heir goals. If you're interested...give it a try: keep an open mind and realize it has some good points and some bad ones. Just like most things in life.
bob 52 years young loving Paleo AND CrossFit! By the way I also do yoga and find it awesome!
For more Paleo hacks: http://paleohacks.com/questions/5030/crossfit-haters-on-facebook#ixzz1FU5C21rU
on July 02, 2011
at 01:35 AM
Either way, his tone was definitely a classic case of "mansplaining." Wotta jerk.
on March 04, 2011
at 01:20 AM
I have trained for two years at Crossfit Invictus in San Diego. All of the trainers that I have worked with, whether in group training, small classes, seminars, or one-on-one have been extremely professional and in touch with the programming as it applies to the range of clients and their abilities. I have had a couple of minor strains and some tough days of delayed onset muscular soreness, but never a real injury. I think this is because @ CFI safety is top priority. I notice that the coaches regularly tell clients to back off of a weight that is causing form/technique problems. In nearly every class I have attended, the coaches break down 1, 2 or even 3 levels of modification to accommodate new folks, old folks or those with a limiting injury of some sort. My advice when starting out is to take time and observe what is going on around you, ask questions without worrying about sounding dumb, and if you think you're doing something wrong or dangerous, get some coach's eyes on you and make them assess your work.
As for Sara's comment about how extreme fitness is not something one should be doing for life, I say go sit on the sofa and watch crystal power yoga with your Ben & Jerry's pint and let the rest of the world be hard.
on March 02, 2011
at 08:48 PM
Any kind of hard training is potentially injurious if you don't also study, work on technique/form, etc. I have been working out for over 30 years. I have done all the "hot" protocols: Poliquin, Chek, Pavel, ABCDE, German Volume training, you name it. To "condemn" Crossfit is almost like attacking "weightlifting" or "running." In other words, it's retarded. Sure, there are certain ideas that SOME in CF espouse that are questionable (like 5 days on/2 days off, for example). The basic premise of constant variety, combining strength and metabolic conditioning is rock solid. I did CF at one of the leading CF gyms in the world (Rogue) for about 6 months before going off and training myself. I never worked with a CF Instructor who didn't know what they were doing or advocated flawed form, not enough rest, what have you. My current routine borrows from Pavel, Jim Wendler and CF??? and it is based on lots of ongoing reading, research, trial and error. It's like anything else. Get smart on it on your own. Keep asking questions. Let common sense be your guide. Train hard. Train smart. Continually challenge yourself
on January 28, 2011
at 07:18 PM
I have to say this first: CrossFit is not going to make anyone SKINNY. Athletic, strong, and lean, yes, but skinny no.
I agree that you should be careful in any exercise program you follow. For example, I enjoy running, but I also know that many, many people develop chronic injuries from distance running, so I am careful to listen to my body and train smart. The same thing goes for CrossFit.
I can only speak to my personal experience with CrossFit, and the people I know who CrossFit. At my box, the trainers are great and I've seen them on many occasions tap someone (or me) on the shoulder and say, "you're done." We all do the same wod, but scale it in different ways, including subbing movements for injured athletes. I once saw someone do Fran with a broomstick, and we all cheered her on as if she was rx'ing. MY experience has been a positive one, I've never seen an athlete pushed by a trainer through an injury, and never felt pressured to do so.
I will note that I have several friends who have had joint pain or injuries and have been able to train in CrossFit without having any of the problems they've experienced with other routines.
As for evolution of movement, I think he's completely off base there. We spend a lot of time on skills like handstands, and once you get movement it's three cheers and let's evolve. If you get a rope climb, let's add weight, just use the arms, etc.
Maybe the point on consistency is valid. There are several CrossFit gyms in my area and I made it a point to find the one that's right for me and has a great intro program.
Overall, I'm left with the impression that this guy doesn't know enough yet to make such strong judgements. You said he just joined, so I wouldn't pay too much attention to someone who's just gotten their feet wet.
on August 19, 2011
at 05:43 PM
This guy makes another good point: yoga babes are HOT!!!
Seriously though, I recently started working with a trainer who is Crossfit certified, and he's been putting me through some Crossfit style workouts, and they have been kicking my butt (in a good way). I needed to be reminded what hard work felt like.
One of the things I respect most about Crossfit is that it recognizes different kinds of fitness like explosiveness and strength endurance rather than just the traditional measures like "How much can you bench press?" or being able to run for a long time.
One of my frustrations is that I never know what is coming next, so I can't plan for it. I wanted to workout yesterday, but didn't because I didn't want to exhaust some part of my body that I'd need to get through today's training session. For example, if I do a chest and back workout one day, that would be counterproductive if I need to do a lot of pullups and pushups the next.
Overall, I'd say I agree with your friend. There are some things Crossfit does really well, and other areas it could be improved.
on July 01, 2011
at 11:20 PM
No discussion of crossfit should go forward without at least one reference to the Coach thread:
on January 28, 2011
at 01:37 PM
One lesson here is to not get into a serious discussion on facebook! For some reason it is too easy for for the other person to shift ground and generally not stick to conventions of reasonable argument. Good luck!
Personally I love Crossfit but I also do some of my own programming.
on January 28, 2011
at 09:29 AM
I just started CrossFit several months ago to supplement my kickboxing training. I think that this argument is very important for the growth of ALL strength and conditioning paradigms, and one that all trainers should know.
I am a supporter of a lot of movements and excerises employed in CrossFit, but I also have some concerns, some that are specific to combat sports training....
I agree that CrossFit lacks specificity in programming and periodization, which can create a stituation of overtraining, detraining and injury. For example, scheduling short interval, anaerobic excercises everyday for 15 weeks is ineffective, stressful to the body, and overlooks other metabolic systems that need to be conditioned. High intensity has to be punctuated with low intensity to get adequate rest, and different muscle types and sizes need different rest periods. I also disagree with how some boxes "ramp up" to movements. Ramping up is not just decreasing weight load until you get the entire movement. One may have to ramp from low impact, low ballistic, low aerobic conditioning to more shocking routines. General exercises should move to more specific exercises, and not in the other direction, or else the specific exercises become ineffective. Why do a fatiguing "warm up" using large muscle groups and then move to an "easier" exercise at the end of a workout to compromise technique?
There are also different variables that need to be considered. What about age differences, muscle types, nutrition, medication, prior fitness levels, or injuries? Scaling a specific workout does not necessarily mean that the recovery period between two indivuals is going to be the same, and that they can just resume training the same WOD the next day. Also, who says that every member is able to make it to every WOD? Effectively, different people at the same box could inadvertantly be going through different training programs if one's specific needs are not carefully monitered. With 100 members per WOD, how can a few trainers moniter everyone.
The mantra of CrossFit is that it can make one competent at everything but great at nothing. In other words, CrossFit can increase your general fitness. However, I want to be great at kickboxing. Functionality is relative. Will a linear movement like a lunge help me thrown a circular kick? They both use the legs, but they use the legs differently. I can take a 3 week rest from kickboxing while increasing my CrossFit routine, then go back to kickboxing and barely make it for one round. Kickboxing has specific demands, over a specific time period with specific rest periods in between. I will never do 15 snatches x 10 cleans x 5 pushups @95lbs AMRAP in 30 minutes in a kickboxing match. The highest intensities are only possible to acheive in the shortest time intervals. One could never run a mile with a their maximum 100m split time. Therefore, 30 minutes of work is a different metablic demand then a 5 minute WOD. I have to train my mind and my body to achieve 3x3 minute rounds with 1 minute rest in between without failure, which includes employing specific biomechanics at an intensity that is appropriate for that time interval. Not to mention, I will have a opponent at roughly my same body weight that will provide different types of pressure (push, pull, isometric...) at different times. In preparing for a fight, in general, I also have (choose) to go through period of calorie restriction (weight cutting). This means that I have to be mindful of calorie expenditures, weight load during exercises (anabolism), etc... Volleyball, basketball, football...etc. all will have different demands that require different adaptations from an individual athlete. Therefore, I believe that not just "intensity" but the "kind" of workout should differ from an indivual. If I present this problem to a Crossfit trainer, can they "scale" my fitness program for every competition througout the entire year?
In other words, CrossFit is not a style of personal training as it tries to sell itself to be (or at least, that is the impression I get). However, an ACE or NCSF certified professional with education in powerlifting and kettbell training (which is training also available to those communities) can technically run a CrossFit box, but the inverse is not necessarily true. You would not get hired as a personal trainer at a training facility with just a Crossfit certification (or a RKC). With that said, every box is ran differently so there is a lack of overall consistency in the community, which only makes Crossfit seem more like a branding/marketing device and not as an actual fitness paradigm. After all, Crossfit did not invent the snatch or deadlift.
on December 11, 2010
at 03:48 PM
This is what I found out about crossfit.
Critics say several health risks have been associated with CrossFit. For example, a United States Navy sailor who suffered injuries while performing a CrossFit workout claimed that CrossFit poses an elevated risk of rhabdomyolysis. He successfully sued his trainers and was awarded $300,000 in damages. According to Dr. Stuart McGill, a professor of spine biomechanics at the University of Waterloo, the risk of injury from some CrossFit exercises outweighs their benefits when they are performed with poor form in timed workouts. He added there are similar risks in other exercise programs but noted that CrossFit's online community enables athletes to follow the program without proper guidance, increasing the risk. Because of the perceived dangers of Crossfit, it has been difficult for many trainers and affiliates to get insurance. As a result, Crossfit has established a risk retention group (RRG). An RRG is a form of self-insurance that is common among professionals that engage in high risk activities, such as law enforcement officers, emergency medical workers, and contractors. Other critics fault CrossFit for lack of periodization, illogical or random exercise sequences, and lacks accreditation standards for trainers and affiliates. CrossFit vigorously disputes the criticism of its exercise methodology and says it is in the process of being accredited by a neutral third party: the American National Standards Institute. Crossfit level one trainers are still not certified through ANSI. Level 2 and other specialty seminars are also not certified
on December 11, 2010
at 03:38 PM
Holy shit, Crossfit is spreading like wild fire!! I went to crossfit discussion. They have reported over 35000 injuries. Now that concerns me. Check it out for yourself. I am out. peace.http://board.crossfit.com/forumdisplay.php?f=12&order=desc&page=179
on March 27, 2012
at 09:12 PM
You should research and study the true methodological and philosophy of Crossfit and you would find that your argument is unfounded.
on February 07, 2012
at 04:29 AM
I don't do crossfit as I have no desire to work out that hard. I am just chiming in to say most of the "haters" are in line with Robb Wolf and Greg Everett and why they are no longer crossfit affiliates because they feel they don't know how to train people and basically overwork people by design. Also there are no real requirements or test to open a box. Any smuck of the street can go to a four hour class pay a fee and they are certified. I my book that kind of scares me.
On the other hand something like crossfit football or the mobility wod seem much more feasible and long lasting.
Just my useless 2 cents!
on July 01, 2011
at 11:42 PM
Do CrossFitters use roids?
on October 27, 2010
at 09:09 PM
I'm in the middle about CrossFit, but want to add a couple points. First, I don't buy the "CrossFit WOD is too specific to apply to everyone" argument. CrossFit takes the most fundamental elements of full-body incorporative movement (olympic lifts, gymnastics, sprinting) and achieves diversity over time by always doing new stuff. Diversity is good for everyone. Repetition is the enemy, after all.
If you can't do CrossFit, you're probably in a small minority (elderly, injured, etc.); CrossFit is just fine for the vast majority, even the overweight. But the intensity can be another story. Although the movements themselves are suitable for most people, the overintensity of that movement may be detrimental when performed repeatedly over long periods of time due to physical stress and the related spike in cortisol. In fact, you can develop cortisol resistance just as you would insulin resistance (details in the book Lights Out). This is why I like CrossFit, just not all the time.
on July 01, 2011
at 09:06 PM
CrossFitters will lllloooooovvvveee their damaged shoulders when they're not young and invincible anymore... Google "Andrew Wilson" to read about all the injuries his searches are finding.
Greg Glassman doesn't even look like he works out. Why not?
on March 02, 2011
at 01:35 AM
The guy has a point. "Extreme fitness" is a fad right now, and not something you should be doing for life.