What is CrossFit?
CrossFit is a style of training developed by Greg Glassman. He summarises what he believes world class fitness to be in 100 words:
“Eat meat and vegetables, nuts and seeds, some fruit, little starch and no sugar. Keep intake to levels that will support exercise but not body fat. Practice and train major lifts: deadlift, clean, squat, presses, clean and jerk, and snatch. Similarly, master the basics of gymnastics: pull-ups, dips, rope climbs, push-ups, sit-ups, presses to handstand, pirouettes, flips, splits, and holds. Bike, run, swim, row, etc, hard and fast. Five or six days per week mix these elements in as many combinations and patterns as creativity will allow. Routine is the enemy. Keep workouts short and intense. Regularly learn and play new sports.”
Based on this thinking, he developed the CrossFit training regimen which is now performed at over 13,000 affiliate sites world wide.
CrossFit is constantly varied functional movements performed at high intensity. The movements reflect aspects of gymnastics, running, weightlifting, rowing and more and are chosen to represent the core movements of life. It is believed that these actions are ideal for maximising the loads and distances that can be achieved and also maximising the amount of work done in the shortest time. Daily workouts are constantly varied and done at high intensity to obtain the most dramatic results.
Overall, the aim of CrossFit as stated on their global website, is
To forge a broad, general and inclusive fitness supported by measurable, observable and repeatable results. The program prepares trainees for any physical contingency — not only for the unknown but for the unknowable, too. Our specialty is not specializing.
Can anyone do CrossFit?
The CrossFit program is adaptable to all levels of fitness and experience by scaling the load and intensity rather than changing the program. This means that classes can be performed by all types of people at the same time. There is a relatively short introductory/beginner program that must be completed prior to joining the mainstream classes which gives you a grounding in the basic concepts.
There are also dedicated CrossFit Kids programs that are provided at many certified facilities and cater for young children and teens.
What are the benefits?
- The basic fundamentals of functional movements means that you’re training your body for the rigours of daily life. Your quality of life should improve as you are able to function more easily.
- Exercises have a large range of movement which results in improved flexibility and strength.
- Unlike some weight machines, functional exercises target multiple muscle groups in a balanced and natural way. All the required muscles for everyday functional movements are trained and strengthened together. This results is a more balanced development of your body and improves your body structure and posture.
- Whole of body training methods challenge the body more which works the cardiovascular system harder, improving fitness levels and increasing calorie burn.
- The high intensity of classes significantly improves your fitness without having to train for long periods each day. Classes are no more than 1 hour in length.
- Classes are performed in small groups with qualified instructors.
- The CrossFit community is large and supportive.
What is a Box?
A facility that is certified to provide CrossFit classes is known as a ‘Box’ or ‘Affiliate’. If you want the genuine experience, you should only use a certified Box. You can confirm if your gym is officially certified by searching here or you can use our free gym search below to find your local Boxes.
What is a WOD?
Training programs are known as WOD’s or ‘workout of the day’ as there is a new and different program each day to keep your training varied.
How is it different from Functional Training?
Functional training is also based on functional movements and is done in a time based, interval style program. The key difference is in the use of weights. Functional training primarily focusses on bodyweight exercises whereas CrossFit incorporates a much stronger focus on weight lifting. This means it can be an incredibly tough form of training with big results but is more likely to be prone to injury than functional training. It’s extremely important that you do it in a controlled environment supervised by a qualified coach.
Where do I find gyms that provide certified CrossFit coaches and classes?
A huge number of facilities located all across Australia provide certified programs. To find the ones closest to you, enter your address or suburb in the search box below. It’s so easy to suss out gyms that support CrossFit!