When it comes to fitness, adults deserve what they get. At any point along the way, out of shape adults can turn the fat train around, stop eating like emotional elephants, and start exercising. Kids like the ones below, don’t have the same choices or experience as adults. They need leadership. Practice CrossFit now and always will do our best to lead adults, but we know it’s all up to them. When it comes to kids, however, its all up to us. We will not fail them.
The following is authored by: Mindy Coby
For three years PCF has held a summer camp for area athletes interested in improving their level of fitness in the off-season. I am amazed every year at the amount of progress made by these athletes in such a short amount of time. We focused on three lifts this summer, and tested three other elements at the beginning and end of the program.
Front squat, jerk, and power clean were the primary strength elements every week. Max box jump height, 400m run, and 500m row times were also taken at the beginning and end of the summer. Unlike the lifts, the run, row, and box jump were worked on far less within the programming. This may be what is most impressive of all when looking at the results.
Below are the average gains made by the athletes over the course of 7 weeks. Some athletes actually improved by more than these percentages indicate:
|Movement||Front Squat||Jerk||Power Clean||400m run||500m row||Box Jump|
|Average Gain||+30 lbs||+22 lbs||+15 lbs||same||-9 seconds||+2.7 inches|
It’s no surprise that the lifts improved since we worked on them every week, though the excitement on their faces as they realized how much they had PR’d was still a sight to see. In my opinion, the impressive benchmarks were the row times and the box jump. Rowing isn’t something that is necessarily practical for these young athletes, and they worked on the skill minimally. However, the variety of CrossFit enabled them to cut 10-20 seconds off of their previous row times, simply because they were in better shape and knew how to push through that pain barrier.
What other skills will instantly become improved upon because of the work done this summer? Max box jump heights not only improved by several inches for most athletes, but the manner in which they jumped looked much safer than at the beginning of the year. Athletes who were afraid of the 24” box were piling the plates on top of it by the end, eager to try something more difficult.
If another category could be added to the PR list for these kids, I’d call that category “mental toughness.” This may be the most useful gain of all. Timid athletes began to speak up and take more initiative. Stubborn athletes learned to slow down and learn proper technique. And the naturally talented kids learned that even they have weaknesses that come to the surface when variety is thrown into the training schedule.
I’m proud of these athletes for the hard work they put in every single day they walked through the doors. I look forward to hearing about their successes throughout the school year because of the work they put in when most of their friends were taking it easy over their summer vacation. In fact, the program has been so successful, and so very needed, that Practice CrossFit will continue these sport specific classes throughout the school year. Young athletes like the ones above need coaches that care and programs that work. CrossFit delivers both, and the results are speaking for themselves all over the planet.
AMRAP 4 Minutes
AMRAP 4 Minutes
AMRAP 4 Minutes
*There is no transition between between events, however each event is scored separately.
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