In most entry level jobs there are specific training courses and things each new employee must learn before jumping right into the bulk of the work. This is to ensure the work is done properly and nothing goes wrong. With workouts, there is a connection. Before you can jump into all of the moves, basic or advanced, you need to understand and be able to do the basic moves so you don’t hurt yourself when trying to increase your max lifts or repetitions. CrossFit is no different with 9 basic CrossFit moves that, if you can get the proper form, will give you results much quicker (and safer) than if jumping into WODs blindly and untrained. See the list below for the 9 basic CrossFit moves and a tip or two on how to improve your form.
- Air Squat – Heels under your shoulders, back straight, toes pointed slightly outward. When squatting down, keep the lumbar curve in your back, get your hips below your knees while keeping as much weight back on your heels (off the balls of feet) as possible, and return to the start position.
- Front Squat – Keep the bar supported by your shoulders, not your hands, and aim to have the backs of your arms parallel with the ground. Keep your eyes forward and your elbows up through the squat motion listed above.
- Overhead Squat – Same mechanics are used in this squat as the previous two. Only difference is to keep the bar directly above your head and keep your elbows and shoulders locked out throughout the entire motion.
- Shoulder Press – Grip should be slightly wider than your shoulders, where the bar will rest. Keep your head back to allow bar clearance in front. From that point press the bar directly over head with the final position being directly over your back.
- Push Press – Start with the bar in the same position as a front squat but grip a bit tighter. Squat at most 1/4 of the depth of a normal squat and come back up while performing a shoulder press (keep head back to allow bar to move in front of your face). Return to the start position and repeat!
- Push Jerk – The start and finish positions of the Push Press and Shoulder press are the same as the Push Jerk. The Push Jerk is different when you drive up from the modified squat position, you jump slightly (feet off the ground) and land before going into the finishing position.
- Deadlift – Start with the bar on your shins or no more than an inch off of them. Keep lumbar curve slightly arched and locked in and as you lift, keep the bar in contact with the legs while driving the weight through your heels (meaning you’re keeping your butt back). Once the bar passes your knee, utilize your hips for the rest of the lift and finish with your chest up and hips extended. Reverse this movement to return to the starting position.
- Sumo Deadlift High Pull – Similar to the Deadlift, just get in a “sumo squat” position to start and have a double overhand position inside your knees instead of outside. Once you finish the Deadlift portion (same movement as standard Deadlift), go into a High Pull by bringing the bar up toward your chin. Keep your elbows above the bar and hands then reverse the movements to get back to the starting position.
- Medicine Ball Clean – Start in a Sumo Deadlift stance with your hands on the outside of the medicine ball. Drive upwards through the heels, extending the hips. Shrug with straight arms and spin hands on the ball to get your elbows beneath the ball. Stand to full extension with the ball in the position of a front squat rack position.
- Honorable mentions: Pull-up and the Muscle-up. Pull-up: Hang with your hands slightly wider than shoulder width apart, elbows locked out. From this position, engage your traps, core, chest, and shoulders to pull yourself directly up until your chin comes above the bar. Muscle-up: Done on gymnastics rings using a false grip (or normal grip depending on preference/ability) or even from a pull-up bar. Swing your body back to gain momentum and thrust your hips forward while pulling with your upper body (pull-up muscles). Keep the rings close to your body and when your body raises to the ring height or above, push your head and chest through the rings to get into a dip position. Once here, perform a dip. Arguably one of the hardest moves but the most rewarding when you complete your first one!
There you have it, the foundations and basic moves to performing nearly any WOD successfully and safely. Getting a good grasp of how to perform these basic CrossFit moves while maintaining proper form allows you to stay healthy, fit, and strong. Still unsure, come on in and ask for clarification from any of our Jupiter FL CrossFit coaches.