Clarification – Many of you are wondering why this picture is sideways and others of you think the picture looks just fine….If you so happen to be reading the blog on your computer then you most likely are seeing a sideways picture. Not sure why there is a disparity, but there is. Since I have been told that the majority of folks look at the blog on their phones I decided to post the picture as it is uploaded. I apologize if some of you have to crank your necks to look at the picture and you’re welcome to those of you who don’t have to. 🙂
DUMBBELLS – WHY DO WE USE THEM FOR MORE THAN BICEP CURLS?
We don’t use dumbbells often, but when we do, BOY are they tough. In reality, incorporating dumbbells into your regular training regimen is important. The following takeouts from an article on BoxLife Magazine highlight why and how to incorporate them. You can see the full article by William Imbo here.
In CrossFit, machines are conspicuous by their absence. Instead, much more value is placed on bodyweight movements and free weights. Free weights, if you didn’t already know, are any type of equipment used for weight training that is not connected to an external apparatus, such as a barbell, kettlebell or dumbbell. Many people that are now CrossFitter’s began training at a globo gym, and probably frequented a few machines during their workout sessions. Does anybody remember the good ol’ pec deck? Ahh, fun times. Thankfully, we all saw the light, and now realize just how valuable free weight in comparison to any weight machine. Need a reminder?
Highlight imbalances in muscle strength
We all have one arm that is naturally stronger than the other. Until you do a dumbbell strict press, for example, you might not have known how much stronger—or how much weaker your other arm is. After a few reps of heavy weight, your right arm will still be able to move the weight upwards, while your left arm is shaking and struggling to complete the rep. If you haven’t experienced this yet I suggest you try out a few heavy dumbbell presses, or better yet, dumbbell thrusters. It’s a strange feeling to tell your body to do something, and have one group of muscles refuse to work as your others perform the desired movement. Since CrossFit is about balance, you want to eliminate any disparities and weaknesses you have in strength, just as you would for specific flexibility issues you may have.
Useful alternate exercise if injured
If you’ve badly hurt a muscle that’s only affecting one arm, then dumbbells (and kettlebells in this instance) are your best friend, allowing you to still get a workout in with some weight without risking further damage to an existing injury.
Dumbbell training is a complex motor activity
When training with dumbbells you have to control two independent instruments rather than controlling a barbell or heavy kettlebell with both arms simultaneously. As such, it takes a greater degree of control, strength and coordination to execute a movement efficiently with two independent weights rather than one—skills you can develop with consistent dumbbell use.
Dumbbells are useful for sport-specific training
For many athletes, alternating-arm exercises and single-arm exercises provide a more sport-specific way to train, as many activities in sports involve single-arm movements (e.g., throwing a punch, spiking a volleyball, swinging a racket) rather than both arms moving simultaneously through the same movement pattern. In addition, athletes rarely apply force against a balanced resistance during competition (just look at water polo, rugby, football, etc.). Both alternating and single-arm movements provide a unique training stimulus compared with typical barbell training.
Great way to learn OLY lifts before progressing to the barbell
As I have mentioned, training with dumbbells helps to improve an athlete’s coordination, balance and strength— important elements in Olympic Weightlifting. In fact, many coaches admit that many people grasp the foundations of OLY lifts easier with dumbbells than barbells
Dynamic Warm-Up – Mobility
U.S. Coast Guard Lieutenant Junior Grade Thomas Cameron, 24, of Portland, Oregon, in training at the Aviation Training Center in Mobile, Alabama, died on February 28, 2012, when his unit’s helicopter crashed into Mobile Bay in the Gulf of Mexico during a training mission. He is survived by his parents Bette and John, and brother Alex.
A. WOD: “Cameron”
50 walking lunges (total)
25 C2B pull up
50 box jump 24/20, 20/16, 16/12
25 triple under
50 hip extensions or good mornings with 75/55 or scale as needed
25 ring dips
50 knees to elbows
25 wall ball 2-for-1 20/14 14/10
50 sit ups
5 rope climbs
* Scale accordingly to maintain consistency of good mechanics, while applying intensity through rounds. Ask your coach for help.
B. ABOVE and BEYOND:
Watch the first 4 videos of this handstand pushup progression playlist, practice for 10-15 min
3 rounds for quality:
Bottoms up double KB hold, 90 degrees. 15-30 sec
Focus on packing the shoulders in
Single Arm Kettlebell sit up, 10 per side
Overhead/suitcase carry, 50 feet each arm
One kettlebell is taken overhead and a heavier one is held in the other arm at the side, walk 50 feet.