FLEXIBILITY, why is it so important?26 June 2016
We are now testing out RomWOD in our Gardens box to help you get your flexibility on!
Last time we spoke about Speed as one of the 10 General Physical Skills and many people nodded their heads in agreement. However when we get to Flexibility, which also is one of the 10 General Physical Skills mind you, many athletes seems to purposely look in the other direction. Why? Well, most of the time because flexibility training is "not cool" and/or "boring". I get it, I mean doing a 30min EMOM of heavy Snatches is way more likely to get a bunch of Instagram likes and bragging rights, but what if I told you that increased flexibility could improve your snatching too? In some cases increasing the range of motion of your joints can be more beneficial for your lifting than actually lifting itself.. Not claiming this dude does RomWOD, but I can promise his daily flexibility training is rigorous.
Why is flexibility so important you say?
In CrossFit terms: Good rep vs No Rep..
In simple terms it's quite obvious, if you are too stiff to get below parallel as an example then you wont be able to hit the "required movement standard" in the Open for instance. But let's rather look at why we require that full range of motion? In CrossFit our main philosophy is actually that the best way to get flexible for the movements, is by doing the movements them self. Kind of makes sense right? When you train your muscles through your joints end range of motion the muscle stimulus gets greater (you get stronger) and your body becomes even more flexible by default. If we want to take a look at specific movements we can easily look at the Olympic Lifts: an athletes ability to get low in their receiving position in an Over Head Squat will increase their capacity in the Snatch (as they simply can get under weights that they can't pull as high = more weight in their 1RM). But if we also look at gymnastics we can understand that if your upper body is not flexible enough to get into a good position in the bottom of a ring dip, then the elusive Muscle Up becomes very hard to get... That said there are many other ways of improving range of motion that can help you (MobilityWOD as an example), and some practitioners recommend static stretching after each session even though this have never been scientifically proven to work..
What is this? Well in short: RomWOD is Yoga for CrossFitters. It's an online program with a daily "Range Of Motion WOD" to enhance not only your flexibility but also your athletic performance due to it. I my self have always been a strong believer in the physical and mental benefits from Yoga (heck, my private email account is Yogamanchris@...) and before I even found CrossFit I used to do Yoga daily by my self on beaches, hikes, or just at home. I have now convinced many of our competitive athletes to try RomWOD out with me since the last few months and many of them, just like me, swear by it's positive effects! Therefore we are now testing out a "RomWOD corner" in our Gardens box firstly to see if we can get all our members to dig into their swoleness and flexiness (surely those are real words?). There is an iPad ready for RomWOD use only and you can now ask the staff/coaches to help you put it on 5-10min after each class (we will try to keep that timeline so everyone can start together obviously). PS. If you really dig this program like I do, then you can actually sign up for a private account that can be used anywhere. HERE you can actually test it out for 14 days for free! You might even turn as weird as me and be the weirdo doing it on Camps Bay Beach any random weekday morning when I get the chance... Coach Chris Head Flexy.