The August 2007 CrossFit Journal issue (#60) is out.
Marty Mitchell, with Mark Rippetoe , "Where Barbells Come From" - This article could be subtitled "Or; Everything You Ever Wanted to Know about Barbells." There are so many types and grades of bars for sale; if you've ever wanted to buy a bar for yourself or your gym, you know it can be confusing trying to determine what sort you need and which features and ratings are most important. The authors walk us through barbell varieties and variations and give a virtual tour of the careful process of manufacturing a high-quality bar.
Dale Saran, "The First CrossFit Games" - CrossFitter Dale Saran and recounts the recent first-ever CrossFit Games from the perspective of a participant. It's not the same as being there in person, but you can vicariously experience the unfolding of events as Saran sets the scene, draws out the characters, and describes the action.
Dave Castro, "Reading Between the Lines" - Once this year's CrossFit Games were over, at the beginning of July, CrossFit HQ guy Dave Castro got intrigued about the commonalities and differences in the experience, performance, and training of the competitors. So he did some digging and analysis to try to answer questions like "What does it take to compete with these three? What are some constants in their performances? And, are there certain benchmarks workouts and exercises that act as indicators (and predictors) of broad fitness and capacity across diverse domains?"
This issue introduces video articles, a new regular feature in the Journal. These are longer, more in-depth online videos than you see elsewhere on CrossFit.com, featuring a variety of coaches, trainers, and experts from across the CrossFit spectrum. We'll bring you at least one each month.
Tony Blauer Video Article: "Combatives Fitness, Part 1: The Warm-Up" - The work of combatives and self-defense expert Tony Blauer is based on the principle that an effective combative/protective system must work with, rather than against, the body's natural movement patterns and instinctual responses to attack and fear. He has put this kind of training and mindset together with CrossFit principles to create training regimens that develop true functional combative fitness. In this video article, he demonstrates how he adapts some of the basic functional movements we're all familiar with (squat, push-up, sit-up, etc.) to the tactical environment. Part 2, in next month's issue, will present a full scenario-based workout.
Greg Glassman Video Article: "On Being a Trainer" - In this 15-minute video, Coach Glassman gives an inspiring talk about what it means to be a good trainer and why it matters. How successful you are—how good you are—he argues, is entirely up to you. While competency in the mechanics is essential, one of the differences between good and great trainers is passion. Passion for movement, for people, for spreading knowledge. It is not about marketing strategies or a great "business plan," or having the perfect space, or any of the other accoutrements. It's about loving what you do, caring enough to do it right, and, ultimately, sharing your knowledge as broadly as possible.
Jeff Martone, "The Turkish Get-Up, Part 3: Overhead Squat Variation" - Martone ratchets up the difficulty of the Turkish Get-Up he has discussed in the past two months with this exploration of an overhead squat variation. It's is not for the inflexible or injured, perhaps, but it is challenging and effective for developing balance, strength, stability, and flexibility all in one package.
Mike Burgener, with Tony Budding, "Teaching the Jerk, Part 4: Skill-Transfer Exercises" - This month brings the last piece of Burgener and Budding's four-part series on teaching the jerk, in which they present four valuable skill-transfer exercises that help develop different aspects of jerk proficiency.
Becca Borawski, "Wrestling with Dan Henderson: Simple Takedown" - Borawski and Olympian wrestler Henderson bring us another fully illustrated approach to the takedown.
Lon Kilgore, "Genetic Potential" - As a fitting counterpart to Castro's article in this issue, Prof. Kilgore explores what it is that makes great athletes great. Is it mainly natural talent or mainly hard work? How much is it both? And what does that mean for the rest of us? How do we train to maximize the potential we have? " To be truly fit to survive, fit to live, fit to work, and fit to play," Kilgore argues, "we need to drive across-the-board adaptations, and we need a system of training that activates every performance gene in its path."
Tony Leyland, "The Stretch-Shortening Cycle and Plyometric Training" - Prof. Leyland explains the mechanics behind the physiologic stretch-shortening cycle (SSC) and clears up some of the questions frequently asked about "the stretch reflex," "eccentric contraction," that "bounce" at the bottom of a squat, and why it's so much harder to jump without dipping the hips and knees first. With video footage of various kinds of vertical jump testing and discussion of how they do or don't involve a SSC.
Michael Rutherford, "An Explosive Combination" - With a full video demonstration of the drill, Coach Rut describes his combination of powerful dumbbell moves and the classic agility drill known in football conditioning circles as the "pro agility" or "5-10-5" drill. Check this one against the "10 General Physical Skills" [ck1] list—yep, it's got many of them covered.
The Grinder, CrossFit FRAGO #13, "SHORTY" - The final "Grinder" in the series of workout operations orders has the soldiers using austere equipment to do rounds of deadlifts, overhead squats, and thrusters.