You’ve heard of CrossFit, the wildly popular strength and conditioning program that’s got everyone exercising. But you might not be too familiar with the details. That’s OK. That’s where we come in. In the following articles, we demystify the popular strength and conditioning program.
About.com interviewed Jason Kart, PT, DPT, physical therapist and CrossFit expert, to explain what all the fuss is about. So, before you go injuring yourself doing burpees and double-unders (say what?), read on to gain a better understanding of one of the fastest-growing sports programs in America. In part one of this interview, Dr. Kart defines CrossFit, discusses the program’s advantages, answers why mountain bikers would choose to participate in CrossFit, and talks about what contributes to CrossFit injuries.
In part two of Dr. Kart’s interview, he talks in detail about the importance of proper rest periods, having a good partner, one-on-one sessions, asking questions and knowing the signs and symptoms of injury. Dr. Kart advises participants to think of fitness as a long-term commitment where the most sustainable improvements come from lifestyle changes. “Create and routinely re-assess your short- and long-term fitness goals. Establish realistic timelines with the help of fitness and nutritional experts,” he advises.
CrossFit. The full-body workout helps participants improve cardiovascular endurance among other things, but it doesn't come without risk. D. Levi Harrison, MD, orthopedic surgeon, participates in CrossFit and also treats patients who’ve sustained injuries from the exercise program. “Some athletes often tell me that they just over do it while in class. I remind them to go at their own pace, and to have a healthy competition only with themselves while in the intense, competitive CrossFit environment," he said. In this article, Dr. Harrison reveals a list of the five most common CrossFit injuries he sees in his orthopedic surgery practice. Find out what they are and how to prevent them.
A recent study conducted by the American Council on Exercise, followed 16 healthy and fit volunteers taking part in two CrossFit workouts (Donkey Kong and Fran). Lead author John Porcari, Ph.D., head of University of Wisconsin, LaCrosse’s Clinical Exercise Physiology program, and Paige Babiash, M.S., found CrossFit to be a time-efficient, high-calorie burning workout. But that doesn’t mean it’s for everybody. “People absolutely need to be properly screened before beginning CrossFit,” he stated. Dr. Porcari and Cedric Bryant, PhD., FACSM, chief science officer for ACE, discuss the study in detail and offer tips to prevent injury in this article.
Everyone from medical professionals to mountain bikers is joining in the CrossFit fun these days. We interviewed physician assistant, Aaron Hewitt, to give us an inside look at what all the fuss is about. He revealed that the CrossFit fellowship encourages everyone to try hard. What’s more, Hewitt attributes his clean diet, 40-pound weight loss and increased physical confidence to the popular strength and conditioning program. After trying CrossFit for one week four years ago, Hewitt said he was hooked. “I can't ever imagine going back to the ‘normal’ gym, rotating through the machines and then spending a half hour on the treadmill or StairMaster,” he said.
Aaron Hewitt, PA-C is a former assistant athletic trainer with the Minnesota Vikings (NFL). In part 2 of this interview, Hewitt discusses preventing injuries, listening to your body and the benefits to cyclists. “On your bike you’re working with physical movements like load, distance and speed. CrossFit training is designed to help develop skills to improve the human body’s capacity to perform when those high-intensity movements are required,” he said.