March 3, 2011

Skill: Squat Clean

Workout of the Day:

30 thruster (95/65)

200 mtr farmer carry (with 1/2 bodyweight kb’s)

30 squat clean

200 meter farmer carry

30 toes to bar

20 meter farmer carry

The farmer carry is a great example of functional movement.

Functional movements are movements based on real-world situational biomechanics. They usually involve multi-planar, multi-joint movements which place demand on the body’s core musculature and innervation. Functional exercises, on the other hand, attempt to incorporate as many variables as possible (balance, multiple joints, multiple planes of movement), thus decreasing the load on the muscle but increasing the complexity of motor coordination and flexibility.

by Wikipedia

Functional movements are universal motor patterns that mimic human movement in every day life. Functional movements are squats, deadlifts, pushes, pulls, lunges, rotational movements. They are not single-joint movements but rather multi-joint movements. They are safe, develop very powerful and useful core strength, provide tremendous neuro-endocrine response, and are the best cardio and best rehab training you can do. Functional movements move from core to extremity and can tolerate high loads and move them long distances in a short amount of time.  Functional training provides the body with a stimulus that is unmatched. These movements will improve the quality of life of everyone who performs them and will teach people how to move their bodies more efficiently and effectively in all life’s endeavors.  From elite athletes looking to improve their performance in a particular sport to a grandmother seeking to gain strength to pick up her grandkids from the floor to over her head, functional training is the answer to improving the overall health and well being of everyone, no matter what level of fitness.

from Crossfit Generation-(

The other theories on what classifies a functional movement are vast. One theory is that if it is wired into our DNA it is functional.If our ancestors used a movement or if it is innate, it is functional. For example, if you drop a pen and tell an adult to pick it up off of the floor, they will invariably bend at the waste with straight legs and pick it up from there. If you drop a pen on th floor and ask a child to pick it up, they will squat their whole body down to the floor to get the pen. The squat is the most functional movement that there is.

Another qualification(there are many) for a functional movement is that it will lead to other movements. a functional movement is not an isolated movement but rather it is a gateway movement to other functional movements.

Crossfit has the unique tendency to prepare us for life as it comes at us in a plethora of unpredictable ways. Few exercise programs can boast of such a thing. These are the reasons that Crossfit is the chosen fitness program of first responders, firefighters, policemen and the military. It also has the ability and the intention to keep us fit for life, to keep us living independently as long as our brains are able to do so. Can you expound on how you think that functional movements can be beneficial in any exercise program?

Mobility WOD