By NICOLE POTTINGER – STAFF WRITER
CrossFit is a high-intensity workout regime that has gained a huge following in recent years. It involves constant varied movements, which are performed as quickly as possible in a given time period. There are over 10,000 affiliated CrossFit gyms in the United States.
Starting in 2007, the “CrossFit Games” are held annually, and are tailored to determine the “Fittest on Earth.”
The winner of these games receives a money prize upwards of $275,000. CrossFit gyms and communities typically organize local events, workouts, and competitions.
CrossFit has a “WOD” or “Workout of the Day,” which can be found online. Other ways to participate in CrossFit include attending personal sessions, or group classes.
Some of the workouts include calisthenics, weightlifting, powerlifting, plyometrics, and body weight exercises. These are typically done in a rotation, or grouped together for a certain region of the body.
Senior and member of the men’s soccer team Jeremy Carlson has been participating in CrossFit for two years.
“The great thing about Crossfit is that it can be scaled to fit the participant. Therefore, the goals are up to the individual participating in the training,” Carlson said. “For myself, I used it as a general fitness and as a way to prepare for soccer season.”
Carlson participates in CrossFit from Nov. through Aug. (the soccer off-season), and after college, plans to participate year-round.
Carlson, who is a diabetic, said that CrossFit has definitely benefited his health.
“My general level of fitness has increased tremendously. Not only have I gotten stronger from the variation from lifts and gymnastic, my cardio has also improved,” Carlson said, “Working out consistently really helps stabilize my blood sugar.”
Junior Ryley Swanner participated in CrossFit at a gym in her home of Ojai, California. She joined not for the physical benefits, but because a friend had asked her to join. After the first session, however, Swanner returned for more.
“It is super exhausting and incredibly difficult, but I really enjoyed the fact that every time I went, I was competing against myself, trying to beat the time or the reps I had before,” Swanner said.
CrossFit allows the individual to work as hard as they want, and feel gratification as their body gets stronger and more tolerant of the high-intensity nature of the workout itself.
Recently, CrossFit has been under fire for the general harm it can do to your body.
Many cases have been filed regarding injuries obtained while performing CrossFit exercises, and that has caused potential participants to stray away. Junior Evan Baylor enjoys the occasional workout and morning run.
When asked about CrossFit, however, said he has reservations.
“It generally seems intense and scary. It seems extreme,” Baylor said.
Rather than performing HIIT (High-Intensity Interval Training), Baylor said, “Just go outside and play. That seems to do the job.”
Carlson had a different opinion regarding the dangerous nature of CrossFit.
“I am aware of the health and safety risks of CrossFit, but like any athletic event, anyone is susceptible to getting injured. It is my personal opinion that no one has gotten hurt from performing CrossFit movements correctly,” Carlson said.
When performing any workout, it is absolutely critical that you pay attention to form in order to prevent injury.
Carlson continues to do CrossFit occasionally in Danville. Danville has its own CrossFit gym, Horse Country CrossFit, located about one mile off of campus.
Carlson stated, “If anyone is interested in doing CrossFit at our own weight room [at Centre], I would be more than happy to hit a few workouts with them and maybe sometime down the road start a CrossFit club.”
Whether or not Centre will see a CrossFit club in the future, there is no doubt that Crossfit has gained a huge following among athletes and citizens concerned about their fitness.