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CrossFit 101

CrossFit 101

What is CrossFit?

CrossFit is a strength and conditioning programme which includes a list of cardiovascular workouts, gymnastics, and Olympic weight-lifting. The gym where CrossFit classes are held is referred to as a “box,” void of fancy TVs and audio systems, and you need to prepare for some hardcore workouts.

Who should try CrossFit?

CrossFit is not for the timid or faint hearted. Forget a gentle workout as it’s all about “no pain, no gain”. This one’s for those who have a high level of fitness and want to push themselves a little bit further. CrossFit classes have been criticised by some in the press, due to injuries that you can sustain by pushing it too hard. This generally occurs when the uninitiated are trying it for the first time, and therefore go all out too early on. It’s important to listen to trained instructors rather than trying this one at home without proper instruction.

What to expect?

With varying equipment being used in CrossFit, there are a huge number of exercises that you could be undertaking. Gym kit used includes kettlebells, rowing machines, gymnastic rings, barbells and resistance bands.

Powerlifting moves, such as dead lifts and bench presses are intertwined with plyometrics, using your own body weight as resistance, running, rowing, Olympic weight lifting, swimming, kettlebell lifts and a whole ream of other exercises.

Perpetually changing the exercises is said to improve all-round fitness, including strength, balance, endurance, flexibility, speed and stamina. Typically an hour-long class at affiliated “boxes” will include a warm-up, a skill development session, a high intensity “workout of the day” and time stretching individually or in a group.

What to wear?

Comfort is key. Wear something you can move freely in, but you might want to stick to flat trainers rather than cushioned ones, as some of the exercises in the early days might throw you off balance.