Rest Day: 06/20/12

by on Jun.20, 2012, under Fitness, Rest day

Today is a Rest Day.

“CrossFit Slop” and Functional Movement Standards

During a recent travel through the internet I came across a couple of sites that were critiquing CrossFit for various reasons. In the effort of full disclosure, I love CrossFit. I think it is an amazing program that provided me with an introduction to functional fitness and I am incredibly grateful and indebted to the company for making positive changes in my life. I won’t speak about the politics of the sport and its affiliates, but CrossFit and Coach Glassman have revolutionized fitness in ways that are only now reverberating through the health and fitness community.

All that being said, I came across two mentions of a CrossFit standard called “CrossFit Slop”. (See this blog post from Whole9 and this blog post fom Mark Fisher Fitness.) The “CrossFit Slop” standard allegedly states that if an athlete is performing movements at high intensity, their form should be degrading by approximately 20%. The reasoning being that if the athlete has perfect form they are not working hard enough, and if they have horrible form they do not have enough knowledge and practice with the movement.

I won’t comment on the feasibility of this standard in a CrossFit modality, but ZombieFit athletes will ALWAYS, ALWAYS be required to maintain proper form while doing their workouts and movements. The main reason for this is that these workouts are programmed in order for athletes and students to begin parkour training. If you do not instill in yourself proper form of basic body-weight movements, it will make it difficult, if not outright dangerous, to perform parkour movements outside.

If your back rounds in a squat, your precisions will suck. If you do not get proper depth and flexibility in your squat your landings will suck. If your core isn’t stabilized in a push up, your kong vaults will suck. I can go on and on. . . .

The secondary reason is strength-training. Since the ZombieFit modality only uses body-weight movements, you must use proper range of motion and form in order to allow for maximum hypertrophy and strength gain. Think of the difference in performing lunges when your knee touches the ground and then contrast that with a lunge with 20% less depth. The latter will be much easier, but will also result in a weaker athlete/student.

Again, this isn’t a hit on CrossFit or their fitness theories. I had honestly never heard of this standard in any of my multiple CrossFit classes and had my share of CrossFit coaches yell at me for my form at the end of a WOD. I just want to make sure that all our students and athletes know that you must concentrate on form and range of motion on ALL movements, whether they be a squat or even just a jumping jack.