CrossFit - The Beginners Guide

So you’re ready to start a workout schedule and someone or something sparked a little interest in CrossFit. Maybe this “CrossFit” is going to be my ticket to success? But I have a few questions and concerns running through my head.

“Is this CrossFit really for real?”
“Do you really think you’re going to get me to do those CRAZY workouts?”
“Am I going to get bulky and buff doing CrossFit?”
“Do CrossFitters really chew on glass and nails after working out?”

And finally,

“If I already enjoy snacks of glass and nails, how can I get started on the workouts?”

Checking out the CrossFit Main Site is definitely the best way to start. The CrossFit Main Site provides all the information you will need to get started. CrossFit HQ provides a daily workout (WOD- Workout Of the Day) which sometimes includes video demonstrations. CrossFit also maintains an online journal to inform the community of exercises, nutrition, and the other aspects of CrossFit.

CrossFit’s theory and workouts are built around some simple fundamental functional movements. Primarily consisting of the squat, pushup, and pullup. These three workouts alone will strengthen your core and teach your body to move with precision and purpose. Learning proper technique is going to be key to working out effectively.

The Basic Air Squat

Drive through the heals!

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The SQUAT is the most important movement. There are a few key points you must look for:

-Feet should be about shoulder width apart with toes angled out around 30 degrees
-Weight stays on the heels the entire time (you should be able to wiggle your toes at the top and bottom of the squat)
-Knees traveling over your feet/toes (push your knees out when you squat so they stay directly over your feet)
-Keep lumbar curve (keep lower back tight by pulling your butt back and your chest up)
-Squat below parallel (your hips should drop just below your knee caps when you squat)

Pushups

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The PUSHUP is a basic movement. The sequence of pictures above show the proper form from start to finish. Keep the abdomen tight and your hips inline with your shoulders and ankles. Locked out at the top and at least parallel upper arms at the bottom.

-Keep body tight and head natural.
-Hips and chest should hit the ground at the same time.

Pullups

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The PULLUP is a great functional movement.

-Pretty simple movement. Start in a hanging position and pull until your chin is over the bar!
-You can perform strict pullups, standard kipping pullups, or butterfly kipping pullups depending on the workout
-If you cannot do a pullup, you can substitute by performing jumping pullups or by using an elastic band
-Jumping Pullup- Stand under a pullup bar on top of a box and grab hold of the bar like your ready to do a pullup. Now you can “Jump” while doing your pullup.
-Many gyms have elastic bands attached to their pullup bars. You can use these by placing your feet into the bands to reduce the amount of weight you are pulling.
-Both of these methods are effective ways to help you to unassisted pullups.

The CrossFit WOD schedule follows a 3 day on, 1 day off pattern. For the majority of us, this schedule will show results and create the basic athlete. Serious athletes striving to reach the CrossFit Games will need to follow a more intense and frequent workout schedule not currently covered on this site. Remember that all workouts can be scaled. During training, it is more important to listen to your body and complete quality reps than it is to finish with flawed technique. Start slow and increase speed with proficiency. Feel free to contact us if you have any questions.

Enjoy!