So as I was reading several articles the other day each article gave their opinions of extreme weight training and other fitness mantras specifically “Crossfit” whether or not the world has taken fitness to the extreme. This is such a controversial topic as you will have some individuals say that Crossfit is Fitness taken to the extreme while others say it is the next best thing in providing weight loss. This blog is not meant to talk bad about people who dislike this form of exercise but to give my opinion of how this form of exercise relates to injury prevention, injuries and knowing if this form of exercise is the best for “YOU”.
What is Crossfit?
This has become a very hot area of fitness as we have just ended the crossfit games. CrossFit, Inc. is a fitness company founded by Greg Glassman and Lauren Jenai in 2000. Promoted as both a physical exercise philosophy and also as a competitive fitness sport. This form of exercise takes functional movements that are constantly varied at high intensity. Crossfit incorporates: strength (Olympic lifting), conditioning, flexibility, gymnastic moves, core strength and overall cardiovascular movements.
So why is crossfit frowned upon?
Many believe that Crossfit is taken to the extreme and can lead to many injuries specifically an injury classified as Rhabdo. Rhabdomyolysis which is a breakdown of muscle tissue that releases a damaging protein into the blood. This injury has been seen to occur in crossfit but in my opinion can be prevented. Again that is just my opinion no facts behind my opinion. .In working as an athletic trainer for 13 years in both professional, collegieate and high school I have seen so many levels and types of injuries. Sometimes injuries will happen regardless of what you may do, you may just get caught in a bad positioning. I have also seen injuries occur do to lack of muscular strength specifically in my female athletes. I had the ability for the past 3 years to really work with and assess high school athletes undergoing crossfit lifts specifically Olympic weightlifting. The increase in flexibility and the ability to strengthen the muscles throughout its full range of motion has allowed these particular athletes to utilize their muscle through its full capacity. This increase of muscular strength and flexibility has shown to decrease common injuries such a muscle strains, pulls, etc….. Now in saying all of this its only my experience and you notice that I have been speaking about “ATHLETE’s So what about the general population (our everyday fitness/or non fitness individuals)
Crossfit and General Population
So crossfit is seen as another type of sport such as football, gymnastics, basketball; just to name a few but classified more as a fitness sport. The reason why I feel it is scrutinized so much is because of the fact of it being introduced to the general population. These are individuals who are not athletes and who just want to get a good workout in and weight loss. In my opinion I believe that SOME individuals can do crossfit and refrain from suffering from major injuries if the movements are done correctly. If you notice I said SOME because everyone is unique and different in their own way. Some individuals may be able to cycle well while others would prefer running. It is a preference but if you choose to embark on crossfit …. Here are some quick tips of how to determine if it is a right for you and things you can do to avoid injuries.
Before I engage in anything I really research what I am getting ready to embark in.
2. Is it a good fit?
Before signing up for crossfit make sure you have gone through some type of foundation class that really shows you the correct form of the movement. Correct form is everything, this is whether you are at a crossfit box or engaging in any other type of weight lifting.
Make sure that you are at a place that where coaching is being done. The coach is constanty letting individuals know if they are not doing the correct form. If a coach is not teaching you proper technique then you are more susceptible in suffering an injury.
4.Don’t overdo it
Sometimes we are just plain hardheaded, if you feel as if you can’t go no more in your workout, pull yourself out. We know how much our bodies can take. A good coach that see you are struggling, form is deteriorating or sees something off about you will come over and check on you. Note what I said A GOOD COACH. This is a huge injury prevention key.
5. Know your limits
This ties in with Don’t overdo it…..Know your limits; if your body is tired and needs rest that day then that is not the time to push it even more. Listen to your body and rest. If you are performing an exercise and something doesn’t feel right then stop the exercise. It is not the time to become a Hero or Shero…..this is when injuries occur.
Crossfit is such a controversial fitness topic and you will read some say it’s absolutely wrong to do while others will praise it. If you are really interested in Crossfit,, reaearch it……read facts about it not just people’s opinions about it. Crossfit isn’t for everyone you have to take time to really research it and see if it is something for you. Look at it the same way you would look at other activities biking isn’t for everyone, running isn’t for everyone. Find what works for you!
With love and crossfit