What exactly IS CrossFit?
Chances are you’ve probably heard of CrossFit (unless your current residence is under a large rock). But maybe the extent of your knowledge is that it has something to do with Paleo people lifting weights in funny socks.
Well, CrossFit is actually a conditioning program created in the 1970s that incorporates elements of high-intensity interval training, Olympic weightlifting, plyometrics, gymnastics, calisthenics, and other “functional” movements – meaning moving a lot of weight, long distances, fast. CrossFit started dominating the zeitgeist around about 2005 and since then it’s continued to double in in popularity almost every two years with Forbes naming it “one of the fastest growing sports in America” no matter what your nutritional persuasion. Yes, vegans CrossFit too!
What makes it the best?
The CrossFit games claim to be “the world’s premier test to find the Fittest on Earth®” which is a pretty bold statement. So what makes CrossFit so superior to competitions like say, Ironmans or decathalons? According to the official CrossFit association, these tests miss “vital components of physical fitness” (although they do not say what those components are...)
Additionally, and perhaps more importantly, athletes in these other competitions know the skills they will be tested on beforehand and have the whole year, if not their whole lives to prepare. In the CrossFit Games, the challenges are unknown to the athletes until right before the competition. This element of surprise is what the CrossFit association claims is the ultimate test of fitness, stating: “Athletes cannot train for what they do not know.”
This combination of supernatural levels of physical fitness plus the element of surprise makes for an explosively exciting sporting event that’s quite literally unlike any other. According to ESPN Magazine, the Games are “the best way to spend 50 bucks” in sports. So if you’re down to watch some serious feats of athletic prowess, turn on your TV to ESPN.