Over my head?

May 19, 2011

In honor of “Jeremy

Three rounds, 21-15- and 9 reps, for time of:
95 pound Overhead squats

OK. There was a bit of confusion(mostly mine) with this WOD. Given the hour (6 AM) and the way that the workout is written, I wavered back and forth between reading it as though it was 3 rounds of a Fran type of workout (meaning you would do 21-15-9, 3 times through) to the more reasonable understanding that the 3 rounds was the 21-15- 9. So the first class thought they did not finish( due to my time management skills)  but they did. Times are a little unclear for the first class as well. Sorry about that too. The second class really took the brunt end of my confusion as they did more than what the workout asked. Rod Harrison gets the superhero of the day award after completing 3 Rounds with 65lbs overhead. Razzu, a volunteer firefighter that is taking advantage of the free month of May, completed 3 rounds with 25lbs overhead. And Alexis Brown did 2rounds with 22lbs. Way to go guys. I am super impressed by you all!

Going overhead presents it’s own set of challenges. It takes much more than brute strength to keep weight up over your head and squat with it. Balance is one of the biggest challenges in the overhead squat. It is takes an extraordinary amount of mid line stability to be able to move through the full range of motion from standing to below parallel and back up again. It doesn’t hurt to be coordinated either. Then of course, there is the issue of shoulder and hip flexibility (ankle flexibility can even be a factor). It is common for athletes to find themselves falling forward out of the squat, the weight pulling them out of their heels and onto their toes and then over. The key to working through this lack of flexibility is mobility. You may have noticed that we have been doing more mobility in class everyday. I have been noticing a lot of improvement in the way that people are moving and I believe that it is due to our attention to mobility WODs. If you would like to do some mobility at home on your own., we recommend spending some time perusing Kelly Starrett’s website, http://www.mobilitywod.com/ . He does a new mobility WOD every day, dealing with all sorts of different joints and the ways to work,  strengthen, and stretch them. Check this one out, it deals specifically with going overhead: I will bend like a reed in the wind.  This is an invaluable resource. We use it all the time and we recommend that you get familiar with it as well.

Where do you think that you are limited by your mobility? What movements? What joints?

The Crossfit Journal – Issue  36- August 2005 by Greg Glassman

“The overhead squat is the ultimate core exercise, the heart of the snatch, and peerless in developing effective athletic movement.
This functional gem trains for efficient transfer of energy from large to small body parts – the essence of sport movement. For this reason it is an indispensable tool for developing speed and power.

The overhead squat also demands and develops functional flexibility, and similarly develops the squat by amplifying and cruelly punishing faults in squat posture, movement, and stability.

The overhead squat is to midline control, stability, and balance what the clean and snatch are to power – unsurpassed.
Ironically, the overhead squat is exceedingly simple yet universally nettlesome for beginners. There are three common obstacles to learning the overhead squat. The first is the scarcity of skilled instruction – outside of the Olympic lifting community most instruction on the overhead squat is laughably horribly, wrong – dead wrong. The second is a weak squat – you need to have a rock-solid squat to learn the overhead squat. We strongly recommend you review the December 2002 issue of the CrossFit Journal on squatting before attempting the overhead squat; you could save yourself a lot of time in the long run. The third obstacle is starting with too much weight – you haven’t a snowball’s chance in hell of learning the overhead squat with a bar. You’ll need to use a length of dowel or plastic PVC pipe; use anything over five pounds to learn this move and your overhead squat will be stillborn.”

So, with that being said, let’s make stability and mobility a priority.

And what do you have to look forward to tomorrow, you ask?

30 snatches for time 135/95
(squat or power snatches ok)

Can’t wait for Isabel!!! My knee is nearly 100%!

Comment by Tait Fletcher — May 20, 2011 @ 5:27 am

Mobility WOD