While the CrossFit program has become hugely popular, for the uninitiated, the first logical question is, “What is CrossFit exercise training?”
Simply, CrossFit training is a type of fitness program geared toward improving conditioning and strength by employing a wide variety of short, demanding and intense workouts. These workouts typically require 20 minutes or less to complete and they are scalable, meaning they can be adapted to any fitness level and any age of participant.
First devised in 2000 by Greg Glassman in Seattle, Washington, the regimen slowly started to spread in its use from one single facility, CrossFit North in Seattle. By 2005, there were 13 gyms affiliated with the program and today more than 4,300 gyms around the world offer the training through the guidance of a large group of certified trainers.
Huge Growth Through an Active Online Community
CrossFit has become a widespread Internet community, with daily workouts, called WODs (workouts of the day), being posted online. Anyone wanting to know, “What is CrossFit?” and how it works can simply go online and become involved in the community without formally attending an affiliated gym. Hundreds of exercise routines are posted on YouTube and many adherents log onto their computers and participate in the program from their own homes.
The scalability of the loads and intensity of CrossFit exercise routines allow participation by a full spectrum of exercise enthusiasts. Some of the individuals and organizations currently employing the program include:
- All exercise enthusiasts
- Seniors and children
- Professional and college sports teams (including the Miami Marlins)
- Olympic athletes
- Housewives and pregnant women
- Combat forces (including the Royal Canadian military)
- Fire departments
- Police forces
Fitness levels derived through CrossFit are broad and general; the company describes itself as specializing in the non-specialized. Hundreds of different routines are performed, including body weight exercises like box jumping, air squats and rope jumping; distance training like running and rowing and weight work with dumbbells, barbells, kettlebells and large, rubber tires.
CrossFit routines provide a vigorous dose of aerobic activity. Research shows that short-term bouts of high-intensity output have more pronounced health benefits than longer, more moderate activity. Participating in this type of program three to five times weekly will also satisfy current fitness guidelines published by government public health agencies.
Most important, though, is your own guideline, measure and goals for fitness. Utilizing CrossFit training in a safe and sensible manner, in accordance with your current age, condition and fitness level, can certainly be a fun and fast way to remain fit.