Where are we as a fitness industry? That is a loaded question depending on how long you’ve been in it. Let’s take a brief walk down memory lane…
Arnold Schwarzenegger and Jane Fonda, why would I reference them, you ask? Well at just about the start of the technological age, the fitness industry was spawning Muscle Beach & Jazzercise. Cut off jeans and the unitard! At about the same time or shortly after, the 24 Hour Fitness model became available for everyone to use in a membership based fusion of “cardio machines” and free weights. This brings us to around the year 2000. Fight clubs, Boxing, Ju Jitsu, MMA classes and actual contact were made available for the masses. Fight clubs, although really legit on a training aspect, fall extremely short when it comes to athlete longevity as a result of a residual repetitive training style and overuse injuries that are common in the sport. Strongman strength training ideology was also popping up in the industry and becoming more practical and understood for training applications. CrossFit, Inc was trademarked in 2000 and brought together three different modalities: Olympic Weightlifting, Gymnastics, and Metabolic Conditioning.
This brings us to the present day. The early days of both Strongman and CrossFit had a lot of negative perceptions and doubts that it could be healthy or safe for the average person to do. Ten years later both CrossFit and Strongman have proven without a doubt that if applied correctly they can supersede the original idea of what fit and healthy can be. Gone are the days of your online personal training certifications. You have really studied individuals who understand kinesiology and what the physiological aspects of training can do for someone. Strongman and CrossFit are pretty much peaking at this time, and as a result, we are seeing a new breed of personal trainers and athletes emerging with tested and applied knowledge. After over a decade of these mainstream adapted training methods, in my opinion, CrossFit and Strongman are placing a real mark on training methodology and a much needed knowledge into this industry.
In today's world what the average person expects out of training has changed. Now it's all about functional training that gives you edges in your everyday life versus just aesthetic goals.
Why embrace Strongman? The process of applying this type of training mirrors CrossFit on so many levels it’s almost a natural union of these very different ways of pushing the human body. Earlier this year CrossFit TurnPoint had an opportunity to work with S10 Fitness to combine Strongman and CrossFit in a workout and watch this union unfold. The reaction from our members was way more than anticipated. It wasn’t just some of the members it was almost all of them, and to see the excitement on their faces has bonded the experience for me into making this a functional part of what we are as a box. If you have watched CrossFit Games over the last couple of years, we are already seeing Strongman implements being used, such as heavy sandbags, yoke carries, and “the pig”. What I got out of this was that the CrossFit ideology of “constantly varied movements” rings true on levels yet to be discovered. This leaves a huge potential for growth and presents the question for all CrossFit Affiliate box owners - which bond is more natural of a fit? For me, it’s a simple answer: StrongMan.
-Michael, owner & coach at CrossFit TurnPoint